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‘Boris Johnson saved number 13 bus after cross-party campaign’, says City Hall

PUBLISHED: 11:06 21 April 2015 | UPDATED: 11:06 21 April 2015

Boris Johnson.

Boris Johnson.

Archant

A spokesman for Boris Johnson has confirmed the Mayor of London’s decision to save the much-loved number 13 bus service was the result of a “cross-party campaign” to protect it, rather than a direct appeal from Conservative parliamentary candidate Mike Freer.

The number 13 bus. Picture: Polly Hancock. The number 13 bus. Picture: Polly Hancock.

On Friday, Mr Johnson announced the number 13 bus, which runs from Golders Green to Aldwych, in Westminster, would not be scrapped.

Earlier this month, TfL completed a public consultation on plans to scrap the number 13’s day and night services.

It had claimed “improved services on the Jubilee and Northern lines” have resulted in “some spare capacity on bus services along these corridors”,

Following Mr Johnson’s decision, Mike Freer, who is seeking re-election as Finchley and Golders Green MP at next month’s general election, told the Ham&High: “I’ve already had a meeting with TfL and told them they were wrong and when Boris came to Golders Green recently I told him he needed to go back to the drawing board.

“He said he would be going back to the directors to see what the hell is going on. Clearly he’s not happy with what he has found.

“The proposals have been dropped and the number 13 is going nowhere.”

After news of Mr Johnson’s intervention broke, supporters of Sarah Sackman, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Finchley and Golders Green, criticised Mr Freer for attempting to take the plaudits for a cross-party campaign to save the service.

But Mr Johnson’s office has now clarified the mayor’s position.

A City Hall spokesman said: “The mayor is well aware of a cross-party campaign to protect the number 13 bus route.

“He is not persuaded by the argument that the route should be replaced and has pledged that it will remain in operation and continue to serve those who rely on it.”

Sarah Sackman, Labour parliamentary candidate for Finchley and Golders Green, said: “This fantastic news is a tribute to the hundreds of people who sent in responses to the consultation.

“We made it clear that axing the number 13 was not acceptable for Golders Green and Childs Hill residents.”

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