London Transport
Central Area Routes 120–124

Last updated 23-08-10.

120
The section of route between Hounslow Heath and Southall had few major changes over the years, therefore the “E” plates tended to be rather old.
120
1966 route 120 timetable1967 route 120 timetable
North- and southbound bus stop timetables for route 120 from May 1966 and January 1967. Surprisingly, there is a typographical error on the first one, being labed for RUOTE 120!

In 1950 route 120 was running on Mondays to Saturdays between Hounslow Heath and Hayes Station via Hounslow Central, Lampton Corner, Heston, Norwood Green, Southall and Coldharbour Lane. A Sunday service was introduced between Hounslow Heath and Southall (Cambridge Road) in 1955 and in 1958 the Saturday service was withdrawn between Southall and Hayes. In 1960 the Hayes extension was withdrawn, leaving just a peak hour service beyond Southall (Cambridge Road) to Southall (Delamere Road) but this too was withdrawn in 1963. In 1965 the route was extended beyond Southall to Greenford Station via Lady Margaret Road and Allenby Road. In 1976 the route was further extended to Greenford (Bridge Park) during the daytime on Mondays to Fridays and during Saturday shopping hours, but this extension was withdrawn in 1982. In 1987 it was extended from Hounslow Heath via Beavers Farm Estate to Hounslow (Bus Station). The route was withdrawn between Southall (Town Hall) and Greenford in 1988, and the routeing via Beavers Farm Estate ceased in 1990. In 1993 it was extended from Southall to Northolt Station via Yeading.


Route 121 ran daily between Ponders End Garage and Chingford Station via Southbury Road, Nags Head Road, Lea Valley Road and Kings Head Hill. In August 1948 the Sunday service was withdrawn but reinstated two months later. In 1962 it was extended during Saturday shopping hours from Ponders End to Enfield Chase Station. In 1963 it was extended in Chingford to Royal Forest Hotel, but withdrawn between Enfield Town and Enfield Chase. The Sunday service was again withdrawn in 1966, and later that year it was converted to one-man-operation on Mondays to Fridays only using RF vehicles, but retaining RT-type buses on Saturdays. It was also withdrawn between Chingford Station and Royal Forest Hotel at the same time. In 1980 the route was extended from Enfield Town to Turnpike Lane Station via Oakwood, Chase Road, Southgate, Palmers Green and Wood Green, and also introduced on Sundays between Enfield Town and Turnpike Lane. In 1982 it was rerouted at Ponders End to run to Enfield Lock via Enfield Highway and Ordnance Road, and also revised to run throughout the route every day. In 2000 it was rerouted at Enfield Lock to run to Enfield Island Village.

121 WEEKDAY
121 WEEKDAY
405This “E” plate was subsequently reused for route 405, by the simple procees of applying a sticker to its back.
121 MON-SAT
As the six-day work week became less common, the phrase WEEKDAY was replaced with the actual days of operation.

122
122
122 SATURDAY FARE STAGE
This “E” plate will have come from the Saturday extension between Bexleyheath and Slade Green between 1970 and 1978.
122 ALIGHTING POINT
This “E” plate will be extremely rare as it came from a single stop at a terminal working. It is especially unusual as these plates normal said ALIGHTING POINT ONLY.
122 SPECIAL JOURNEYS ONLY
RT2669 [LYR653] on route 122 in the summer of 1970, loading up at Crystal Palace at the outset of its long haul to the edge of the built-up area at Slade Green. A Swift on route 227 has drawn up behind. The hut to the right offering public telephone, waiting room and crew facilities has long been replaced.
Photo courtesy dublo19.

Route 122 ran daily between Bexleyheath Depot and Woolwich (Earl of Chatham) via Bexleyheath Broadway, Crook Log, Pickford Lane, Okehampton Crescent, Wickham Lane and Plumstead. In 1964 it was extended on Mondays to Saturdays from Bexleyheath to Slade Green Station via Colyers Lane, Bridge Road and Hazel Road. It was also extended daily from Woolwich to Crystal Palace via Academy Road, Well Hall Road, Westhorne Avenue, Eltham Green, Lee Green, Lewisham, Adelaide Avenue, Brockley Rise, Forest Hill, Kirkdale and Westwood Hill to replace the withdrawn route 186. In 1970 it was withdrawn between Bexleyheath Garage and Slade Green on Mondays to Fridays, replaced by a revised route 132. In 1978 it was withdrawn completely between Bexleyheath Garage and Slade Green, replaced by daily service on route 89. In 1984 the Monday-to-Friday daytime service was split into two sections, with the Bexleyheath allocation operating mainly between Bexleyheath and Woolwich or Forest Hill (except for a few early and late journeys which went through to Crystal Palace), and Plumstead Garage running to Crystal Palace. In 1988 the 122 was withdrawn between Plumstead Station and Bexleyheath, and replaced by new route 422.


Route 122A was introduced in February 1951 running daily between Woolwich and Erith via Plumstead, Wickham Lane, Okehampton Crescent, King Harold’s Way, Bedonwell Road, Parsonage Manor Way and Bexley Road. The Sunday service was withdrawn in 1956 and replaced by an extension of the 53 to Erith. The Sunday service was reintroduced in 1963 when the 53 was cut back again. In 1964 the Sunday service was extended from Woolwich to Crystal Palace over route 122 via Well Hall Road, Westhorne Avenue, Eltham Green, Lee Green, Lewisham, Brockley Rise and Forest Hill, making the Sunday extension longer than the main route! The Crystal Palace extension was withdrawn in 1969 when the service was converted to one-man-operation. In 1978 the route was extended from Woolwich to Queen Elizabeth Hospital, and the Sunday service was withdrawn again in 1982. In 1985 it was extended from Erith to Slade Green Station via Manor Road. The route was withdrawn completely in 1988 and replaced by the new 422 and B12.

This “E” plate will have come from the Sunday extension to Crystal Palace between 1964 and 1969.

122A SUNDAY

123
This “E” plate is from the days when the 123 was Routemaster operated and went from Ilford to Manor House (1960 to 1968).
First Captial’s TAL949 [W949ULL]—a 10.5m Dennis Trident with Alexander ALX400 bodywork—is seen at Ilford Post Office in the early ’00s. Note the modern “B(C)G(6)E(15)” stop flag.
Photo courtesy of London Bus Routes.
TAL949

In 1950 route 123 was operated by Hornchurch Garage [RD] using Guys, and ran from Ongar (Moreton Road) to South Hornchurch (Coronation Drive) via Stanford Rivers, Passingford Bridge, Stapleford Abbots, Havering Green, Collier Row, Romford and Elm Park. In 1952 STLs replaced the Guys, and a year later the route was switched to North Street Romford [NS]. In 1954 the STL type was withdrawn in favour of RTs, and in 1958 the route was withdrawn, replaced mainly by a revised route 175.

In 1960 the number 123 was reused for the replacement of trolleybus route 623 and the withdrawn section of service 41. It ran from Manor House to Ilford Station via Tottenham Hale, Forest Road, Walthamstow, South Woodford, Southend Road and Gants Hill. In 1968 it was rerouted at Tottenham Hale from Manor House to Enfield via Winchmore Hill, Palmers Green, Turnpike Lane and Bruce Grove replacing the withdrawn section of route 275. The Manor House section was replaced by new route 241. In 1977 the route was converted to one-person-operation and withdrawn between Winchmore Hill and Enfield Town. In 1985 it was rerouted towards Ilford via Turnpike Lane Station. In 1988 it was withdrawn between Wood Green and Winchmore Hill, now terminating at Wood Green Garage. In 1991 the 123’s operation was transferred to Capital Citybus’ Dagenham Depot [DM], and the Wood Green terminus changed to Redvers Road.


Route 124 ran daily between Forest Hill Station and Eltham (Southend Crescent) via Perry Vale, Catford, Sandhurst Road, Verdant Lane, Downham, Grove Park, Dunkery Road, Mottingham and Eltham Church. In 1955 it was extended during Monday to Friday peak hours from Eltham to Blackfen (Woodman). In 1959 it was extended on Sunday afternoons from Eltham to Bexley Hospital via Blackfen, Blendon and Bexley. In 1960 the peak hour service was diverted to run to Falconwood Parade instead of Blackfen, and the Sunday service was renumbered 124A. In 1963 the 124 was extended at all times from Eltham to Woolwich via Falconwood, Welling, Wickham Lane and Plumstead. In 1965 the Monday to Friday service was withdrawn between Welling and Woolwich except during peak hours. In 1968 the Saturday service was withdrawn between Welling and Woolwich. In 1972 the peak hour service to Woolwich was reduced to the evening peak hour only, and during the morning peak it only ran to Plumstead Station. In 1977 it was withdrawn completely between Welling and Plumstead/Woolwich. The route was reintroduced on Sundays in 1978, but withdrawn on this day again in 1982. In 1985 it was withdrawn between Eltham (Southend Crescent) and Welling, apart from school journeys to Avery Hill School and one journey in each peak to Welling. Also that year a Sunday service was again reintroduced to replace the withdrawn 124A between Forest Hill and Eltham, with some afternoon journeys running on to Bexley Hospital. In 1987 it was withdrawn between Catford (St. Dunstan’s College) and Forest Hill. In 1990 the school journeys to Avery Hill and peak journeys to Welling were renumbered 124S, and subsequently 624.

T1073
T1073 [A73THX] in the mid-1980s, starting out from Eltham on its journey to Welling Corner. As well as an assortment of “E” plates, the bus stop also sports a QUEUE THIS SIDE⁄QUEUE OTHER SIDE “G3” plate.
Malcolm McDonald photo; courtesy of London Bus Routes.
124 MON.-FRI. PEAK HOURS
124 MON.-FRI. RUSH HOURS
RUSH HOURS is the newer version employed by London Transport.
124 MON-SAT

124A SUNDAY AFTERNOON
This “E” plate came from the Bexley Hospital extension.
124A SUNDAY P.M.
This plate is rather more unusual in having SUNDAY P.M. rather than the more usual SUNDAY AFTERNOON legend. The discolouration on so many of the plates used on the hospital extension probably results from the more rural location of the stops, and that they lasted a long time as no changes occurred for 25 years making them rather old.
T875
Leyland Titan T875 [A875SUL] pauses at stop T by Catford Bridge railway station on its way to Forest Hill Station.
Malcolm Macdonald photo; courtesy of London Bus Routes.

Route 124A was introduced in 1960 as a Sunday variant of the 124, running between Forest Hill Station and Eltham (Southend Crescent) via Catford, Sandhurst Road, Verdant Lane, Downham, Grove Park, Marvels Lane and Mottingham. It was extended on Sunday afternoons to Bexley Hospital via Blackfen, Belndon and Bexley Village. In 1968 the service was diverted at Eltham Church to run to Eltham (Well Hall Station) instead of Southend Crescent, except at the times buses ran to Bexley Hospital. The 124A was withdrawn in 1985, replaced by special journeys on route 124.

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