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One of London's last Routemaster services under threat

by Simon Harris: Political Correspondent

Plans have been revealed to scrap one of the last services using traditional Routemaster buses.

Two Routemaster Buses in Trafalgar Square Credit: Press Association

Transport bosses say the Number 9H service between Trafalgar Square and Kensington High Street is "relatively expensive to operate".

London Transport Routemaster bus at Ludgate Hill in 2002 Credit: Press Association

The withdrawal of the iconic double decker would leave the Number 15H route between Tower Hill and Trafalgar Square as the sole survivor

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Route will be 3rd to run entirely with New Bus

The New Bus for London Credit: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire

Route 9 will be served by the New Bus for London - also known as the 'Boris Bus' - which has a conductor and the same hop-on hop-off feature as the old Routemaster.

The route - which runs from Hammersmith to Aldwych will get 22 of the new buses from Saturday. 16,000 people use the route every day.

Route 9 joins routes 24 and 11 which are already run entirely with a fleet of New Buses.

Route 390 will become part of the exclusive group on 9 December.

Woman fights for life after falling from back of bus

A woman has been left seriously injured after falling off the back of one of London's new Routemaster buses. The passenger fell from the platform of the double decker in Kentish Town this morning on the No24 route near Malden Crescent.

One of the main reasons why hop-on hop-off buses were phased out of London's transport system years ago was that they are not appropriate for a modern, accessible public transport system.

The second staff member whose job it is to guard the back platform comes at a cost of £62,000 per bus per year - £37m in total across the 600 buses in operation - but even with this extra staff member, a passenger fell onto the road and suffered serious injuries.

– Darren Johnson AM, Transport Committee Member

Royal couple visit Routemaster factory

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall have been getting a taste of London while touring Northern Ireland.

They've paid a visit to the factory where the capital's new fleet of Routemaster buses is being built.

More than £200 million is being spent on 600 ultra-low carbon double-deckers.

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Bus produces half the carbon dioxide of conventional buses

The New Bus for London was inspired by the much loved Routemaster Credit: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire/Press Association Images

The New Bus for London was inspired by the old Routemaster, uses the latest green technology and is the first bus in over 50 years to be designed specifically for the capital's streets.

The bus uses the latest diesel-electric hybrid technology and is apparently the best performing bus of its kind in the world.

In test conditions the New Bus produced around half the carbon dioxide and a quarter of the particulate matter and nitrogen oxides of conventional diesel buses and is more fuel efficient.

'Cleanest, greenest' bus runs from Hampstead Heath to Pimlico

27 of the New Buses for London will operate on Route 24 Credit: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire/Press Association Images

A total of 27 of the new driver-and-conductor buses, the brainchild of London Mayor Boris Johnson, will be operating on Route 24.

This runs from Hampstead Heath in north west London to Pimlico in central London and is used by 28,000 each day.

A greener, more-accessible successor to the driver-and-conductor Routemaster bus, the New Bus for London is made by the WrightBus company in Northern Ireland.

The first eight of the new buses have already run for some months alongside driver-only vehicles on the route 38 which runs from Clapton and Hackney in east London to Victoria in the centre of the capital.

The next route to get an entire fleet of the new buses will be Route 11 in September this year. This route runs from Liverpool Street station to Fulham Broadway.

In total, 600 of the new buses are on order.

Mr Johnson said: "All the way from Hampstead Heath to Pimlico Londoners can now hop aboard the world's cleanest, greenest bus of its type."

The last regular-service Routemaster ran in December 2005, although some still operate on tourist routes in London in addition to existing services.

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