Victory for Battersea residents as missing 170 bus set to return

Published: Friday 12th January 18

Battersea residents are breathing a sigh of relief after travel chiefs at Transport for London pledged to restore their missing 170 bus service from Monday morning.

Local people were up in arms after TfL withdrew the service just before Christmas without telling anyone.

The buses disappeared after TfL replaced the old single deckers on this route with new models that could not fit underneath the railway bridge in Lombard Road.

Despite TfL claims that the bridge's current 3m/10ft clearance had been lowered, this image from June 2008 shows it has remained unchanged

And instead of telling local people – or restoring the old buses as a stopgap until they could work out a longer-term solution, TfL simply withdrew the 170 from this part of Battersea leaving residents living in Lombard Road, Vicarage Crescent and Battersea Church Road with absolutely no bus service at all.

But following pressure from the council - and from local people, 790 of whom signed a petition in just a few days, TfL has relented and reinstated buses that can fit under the bridge. Services on the 170 are now scheduled to resume on Monday morning.

Wandsworth’s transport spokesman Cllr Jonathan Cook said: “This was a completely farcical situation that was entirely of TfL’s own making.

“It seems they went ahead and ordered new buses for this route without checking if they could actually fit under the railway bridge.

“This was then compounded by their reluctance to come clean and admit they’d made a mistake. Instead they removed all the buses and hoped no-one would notice or kick up a fuss. They were certainly wrong about that!

“I am very pleased that a combination of town hall pressure combined with people power in Battersea has seen this ludicrous situation brought to an end and buses back on the route.

“We will of course continue to offer our support to TfL to find an engineering solution so that the modern buses that should be on this route can be introduced as quickly as possible."

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Recent comments

Are TFL running a service for people, or for themselves? Their total lack of concern for the residents who were affected by their mistake is quite amazing. Another example is their unwillingness to extend the 22 bus from Putney to Barnes. Barnes is a lovely little village, but it is almost inaccessible from Putney and yet TFL will not extend the 22 bus by a few stops to make it accessible.
Maryvonne Lumley

13 January 2018

At last something has started to be done. Before Christmas when the route was changed I e-mailed our Council Leader. Now suddenly I'm getting e-mails from the Tory Party, Labour party and TFL. What was really annoying was the fact I saw the bus running empty from Battersea Bridge - down Battersea Bridge Road - along Battersea Park Road - until it joined up with it's original route near Plough Road. A local resident got this 170 bus put in around 30 years back - before which time there was no bus service (I was then young enough and the roads were safe enough to cycle ) - and it would be a shame to lose - what is a very busy service.
Liz D

13 January 2018

The Mayor needs to be more transparent in his dealings with London residents. The covert way in which the 170 route was sneakily altered without explanation was disgraceful and failed to give the community an opportunity to propose alternative solutions.

12 January 2018