TfL slammed for plans to scrap 13 bus from Golders Green
PUBLISHED: 11:38 10 March 2015 | UPDATED: 11:38 10 March 2015
Plans to scrap a popular bus route linking Hampstead Garden Suburb and Golders Green to central London has sparked outrage among commuters.
Transport for London (TfL) has launched a public consultation on proposals to drop the number 13 bus route between Golders Green and Aldwych, in Westminster.
TfL claims “improved services on the Jubilee and Northern lines” have resulted in “some spare capacity on bus services along these corridors”, prompting the decision to scrap the number 13’s day and night services.
Regular number 13 user Marjorie Harris, of Erskine Hill, the Suburb, said: “The 13 is an old and much-loved and used convenient route for north-west Londoners. I hope TfL will think again before axing it.
“The direct route that the 13 route takes is extremely handy for central London destinations, including Oxford Street. The Aldwych terminus covers theatre land in Piccadilly and the Strand and the National Theatre
“Many older or disabled people and those with children and pushchairs prefer using buses to the underground. There are fewer steps, no escalators, better local connections and a driver who can respond directly.”
To compensate for the potential loss of the number 13, TfL is proposing to extend the 113 bus route (from Edgware to Marble Arch) to Oxford Street and increase its frequency.
There are also plans to extend the 139 route (from West Hampstead to Waterloo Station) to Golders Green, as well as introducing a night service on the 82 route (from North Finchley to Victoria).
Finchley and Golders Green MP Mike Freer said: “I was quite shocked when I discovered that TfL were even considering changing the 13. So my view is they should leave it alone.
“It’s a very heavily used bus, it’s a very popular route, and it’s integral to linking Golders Green into central London.
“TfL are making a huge error if they think that they are going to take it away.”
Golders Green councillor Dean Cohen, who chairs Barnet Council’s environment committee, said: “The 13 is a long-established and much valued route. I will be making representations to TfL, on behalf of residents, to try and ensure this route continues to operate.”
Jonathan Davies, Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Finchley and Golders Green, called for a campaign to save the number 13 route.
He said: “Another local public service is under threat with TfL’s proposals to axe the number 13 bus route.
“We will be working with Liberal Democrat members of the London Assembly to resist these proposals and save this bus route.”
Peter Bradley, TfL’s head of consultations, said: “The bus network is dynamic and we constantly monitor and adjust it according to changing demand. This has always been the case.
“This consultation is part of our continuing efforts to manage the bus network. Any savings made will be used to fund improvements to other services across the capital.
“We are working to keep the bus network convenient, reliable and simple to use.
“Significant considerations in making these proposals are the improved services on the Jubilee and Northern lines which have resulted in some spare capacity on bus services along these corridors.”
A public consultation on plans to scrap the number 13 runs until April 10. If you wish to respond to the consultation, go to consultations.tfl.gov.uk/buses/finchleyroad