London Buses route 25
|Garage||Lea Interchange (LI)|
|Vehicle||Volvo B9TL 10.4m / Wright Eclipse Gemini 2|
|Peak vehicle requirement||59|
|Length||11 miles (18 km)|
|Frequency||About every 3-8 minutes|
|Journey time||64-100 minutes|
Route 25 began operation on 30 October 1910 between Victoria and Old Ford via Piccadilly, Oxford Circus, Holborn and Bank, the same routing as today's route 8. This was the second motor bus route in London to carry this number.
On 20 June 1912, routes 8 and 25 exchanged their eastern branches at Bank, with the 25 taking over what has become its traditional route from Victoria to Seven Kings (Seven Kings Hotel). By the end of the First World War, the 25 was working Daily between Victoria and Seven Kings Garage, with a Sunday 25A route from Victoria to Chadwell Heath (White Horse). During the 1920s, London's bus transport expanded rapidly, and the 25 soon had gained 25B, 25C and 25D suffixed routes.
This situation remained until 3 October 1934, when the newly constituted London Passenger Transport Board instituted its own numbering system, which generally re-instated the situation previous to December 1924, apart for route 145, which by then had developed into a self-contained route, thereby keeping its route number. Each route ran every 6 minutes on Mondays to Fridays, providing 40 buses per hour on the common sections; the routes were operated from garages in Seven Kings, Forest Gate, Upton Park and Hammersmith (Riverside) on the 25.
Various parts have fallen by the wayside over the years, the 25B variant from Victoria to Becontree Heath eventually becoming the main service and losing its suffix in about 1950. By 1982 the route was running in two overlapping sections, Victoria to Ilford and Aldgate to Becontree Heath; in that year the latter section was renumbered 225, albeit running to Limehouse instead of Aldgate. Both routes were Routemaster operated, but the 225 was soon converted to one-person operation using Leyland Titans. The 225 also reverted to serving Aldgate. In 1988, the 25 (now Victoria to Ilford) was also converted to one-person operation, and consequently the 225 was renumbered back to 25 to match. The combined 25 was operated from Bow garage. A weekend diversion via Tower Hill was also introduced at this time.
The route was allocated to the East London division of London Buses in April 1989. In 1992 the route was shortened when the Victoria to Oxford Circus section was handed over to route 8. In March 1993 the 25 was cut back to Ilford; new route 128 covered the section to Becontree Heath. However, this reduced the service between Ilford and Aldgate, being a precursor to recent overcrowding.
The route was awarded to Capital Citybus on 26 June 1999; at 30 buses, it was the largest London route to change operator as a result of retendering. Capital Citybus proposed a reversion to sectional operation during the day on Mondays to Saturdays, with the sections being Ilford to Aldgate and Stratford to Oxford Circus. This was turned down on the grounds of service simplification. The route was initially operated from Dagenham garage, but was later moved to Rainham.
The introduction of congestion charging saw the route's peak vehicle requirement increase to 40 buses. On retender in 2004 the route was converted to articulated single deckers as a result of overcrowding. The contract was won back by East London, now owned by Stagecoach Group, and became the first route to be run from a new Waterden Road garage. The Arctic conversion initially resulted in the withdrawal of three evening peak journeys and a consequent reduction in peak vehicle requirement from 40 to 37. The weekend diversion to Tower Hill was withdrawn. The 25 was the longest route in London to use articulated buses.
On 30 October 2010, the route was re-extended to Oxford Circus.
On 25 June 2011, First London commenced operating route 25 with new Wright Eclipse Gemini 2 bodied Volvo B9TL double deckers. The service now runs approximately every 3-8 minutes at all times of the day and night. On Mondays to Saturdays, approximately half of all westbound buses terminate at Holborn Circus.
In August 2006 it was revealed that the 25 was the most dangerous bus route in London over the preceding year, with staff on the route having made 471 emergency calls.
In October 2007, a man was killed when he became trapped under an articulated bus on the route having got off it in Ilford High Road.
- Ilford High Road Hainault Street
- Ilford High Road for Ilford Station
- Manor Park
- Woodgrange Park Station
- Forest Gate
- Stratford Broadway for Stratford Station
- Bow Church Station
- Bow Road Station
- Mile End Station
- Stepney Green Station
- Whitechapel Station
- Braham Street for Aldgate East Station
- Aldgate High Street for Aldgate Station
- Bank Station
- St Paul's Station
- City Thameslink Station
- Chancery Lane Station
- Holborn Station
- Tottenham Court Road Station
- Oxford Circus Station
- Oxford Circus Holles Street
Articulated Mercedes-Benz Citaro on route 25
- Route 25 londonbusroutes.net
- "Homeless people take refuge on London's longest bendy bus route | Mail Online". Dailymail.co.uk. 2010-02-17. Retrieved 2011-06-13.
- "England | London | Full steam ahead for new gas bus". BBC News. 2004-01-14. Retrieved 2011-06-13.
- "Dangerous bus routes revealed (From This Is Local London)". Thisislocallondon.co.uk. 2006-08-09. Retrieved 2011-06-13.
- "England | London | Man dragged under bus for a mile". BBC News. 2007-10-09. Retrieved 2011-06-13.
- "Homeless bed down on London's longest bendy bus route | Evening Standard". Thisislondon.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-06-13.
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