Ford wins licence to run minibus shuttle service in Wandsworth
Published: Tuesday 30th January 18
Wandsworth Council has cautiously welcomed the news that Transport for London has granted car company Ford permission to run its Chariot minibus shuttle service along two routes in the borough.
A vehicle similar to this will be used on the routes
Ford has received permission from Transport for London for a permit to run the service in four central London routes, including the ‘Wandsworth Wanderer’ from Riverside Quarter in Wandsworth to Clapham Junction and the ‘Battersea Bullet’ from Battersea Park to Kennington.
However, they have been approved for a limited time period only to assess any significant impacts on existing local traffic and transport. The Battersea Bullet is approved for 12 months and the Wandsworth Wanderer for nine months. In Wandsworth TfL is expected to extend the route of the 485 bus to Riverside Quarter later this year.
The routes end at or near an Underground or mainline train station. The company claims the routes would connect areas not well served by existing bus routes and will “complement the existing public transport system.”
The two routes
The Chariot service, described by Ford as a ‘commuter micro-transit service’ already operates in four American cities. The London service has already launched and runs Monday to Friday apart from public holidays. Customers book and pay for a ride on a scheduled 15-seater vehicle along the route using the Chariot app.
Transport spokesman Cllr Jonathan Cook said:
“We encouraged our residents to take part in the consultation on this proposed new service, and many welcomed it. We feel it could be a useful additional transport option to mainline stations, but as our borough continues to see widespread regeneration and new residents moving in, we will continue to push Transport for London to ensure they provide adequate transport links as part of their network rather than just expecting other firms to fill any gaps.
“As part of this we are concerned that the 485 route has not yet been extended to Riverside Quarter, despite the fact we have put funding in place. We will continue to keep an eye on this to ensure TfL keeps its promise to introduce the new extended service later this year and in the meantime will monitor the impact of both of these Chariot routes”