Thames Travel

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Thames Travel
Thames Travel logo.PNG
Thames Travel 1257.JPG
MCV Evolution bodied MAN 14.220
in Reading in May 2008.
Parent Go-Ahead Group
Founded April 1998
Headquarters Wallingford
Service area South Oxfordshire
Service type Bus services
Destinations Oxford, Abingdon, Bicester, Didcot, Reading, Wallingford & Wantage
Fleet 42 (February 2017)

Thames Travel[1] is a bus operator based in Wallingford, Oxfordshire, England. It is a subsidiary of the Go-Ahead Group.


Mercedes-Benz O530 Citaro in September 2012
Alexander Dennis Enviro200 Dart in Bracknell in June 2010
Optare Solo in Bracknell in June 2010

Thames Travel was founded on 14 April 1998 by John Wright with four buses. It expanded by winning new contracts in Oxfordshire and Berkshire, and taking over work from operators that have ceased trading such as Chiltern Queens of Woodcote and Tillingbourne Bus Company on 19 March 2001.[2] Thames Travel has also benefited from operators including First Berkshire & The Thames Valley, Reading Buses and Stagecoach in Oxfordshire, giving up commercial work. However in recent years smaller competitors including Heyfordian, RH Transport, Weavaway Travel and Whites Coaches have won work that Thames Travel had operated.

In May 2011 Thames Travel was purchased by Go-Ahead Group.[3][4]


As of May 2015, the fleet consisted of 52 buses.[5] The fleet is numbered in the Oxford Bus Company series.[6]

The main fleet is made up of ex-Oxford Bus Company Mercedes Benz Citaros, along with a number of Optare Solos and newer Solo SRs (for use on the Bicester operation).


Depots are located in Wallingford and Oxford, with outstations in Reading.

Notable incidents[edit]

Thames Travel vehicles have been involved in three major accidents, widely reported in the local media. All happened on the A4074 road, locally known as the "13 bends of death".

In the first accident, on July 21, 2006, a 26-year-old woman was killed after colliding head on with a Thames Travel MCV Evolution bodied Dennis Dart SLF number 155 in plain white livery. It was found that she did this to avoid a collision with two cars coming towards her, who had been recklessly overtaking numerous other cars before the accident. As a result of the collision, both vehicles caught fire and were completely destroyed. The bus was replaced with the next intake of new vehicles.[7] The two brothers arrested after the incident were charged and jailed for a total of 15 years for the accident.[8]

The second accident, on 28 January 2008, involved an MCV Evolution bodied MAN 14.220 number 256. It collided in fog with a Land Rover that was turning off the road across the bus's path. The Land Rover landed on its side; the bus in a ditch. The accident happened on the A4074 at its junction with the B4526 road. Five people were injured.[9]

The third, on 14 October 2014, involved a Mercedes Citaro number 853. A van collided with the Thames Travel bus travelling along the A4074, leaving the bus driver and a passenger injured.[10]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]