|An Ensignbus BCI is seen on route 145X to Ilford.|
Routes 62, 145, 248 and 252 had the most amount of additional buses in East London, although some rogue extras include a couple of Scania Olympus vehicles on the 5 and a "Vantage Hybrid" B7TL ALX400 on the 370, which bizarrely ran on a limited stop basis between Upminster and Hornchurch Station, even though the main route doesn't actually serve the latter destination. Although I didn't see any of these oddities on my travels, I managed to observe the four mainstream strike services quite well and chronologically, the 62 is first.
|Stagecoach London 18217 is seen in Becontree on one of the less interesting 62X workings.|
|Ensignbus RML2258 is seen at Fair Cross on route 62 to Chadwell Heath|
|Ensignbus 145 is seen in Becontree on route 62 to Barking.|
|Stagecoach London 18498 is seen at Ilford working the first Eastbound extra journey of the day.|
|Ensignbus M1 is seen at Fair Cross on route 145 to Dagenham East.|
|Ensignbus 116 is seen at Fair Cross on route 145 to Dagenham East.|
|Ensignbus 114, another Olympus, is seen in Hornchurch on route 248X to Upminster.|
|Ensignbus 192 is seen upon arrival into Romford Station.|
|Ensignbus 401 is seen at Hornchurch Town Centre on route 248 to Romford.|
|WVL19 is seen at Hornchurch before working the last inbound 252X journey.|
Like the 248, the supplementary 252X service ran along most of the main route, with the missing section being the short stretch from Romford to Collier Row, which probably wouldn't have had any increase in passenger numbers during the strike. Extra buses started at Romford Station like the 248 and terminated at Hornchurch Town Centre, although the difference between these two routes is that the 252 serves much more housing and takes a longer route between the two suburbs, also passing Elm Park and Hornchurch District Line stations and linking their catchment area to the TFL Rail service at Romford. In general, the 252 seemed like one of the more popular extra services, with all the buses carrying decent loads during the evening peak, although it was certainly not the most reliable - in the space of a minute I saw three Volvo B7TL Geminis in a convoy, along with a Routemaster not far in front. No buses appeared for a significant amount of time afterwards. This extra service also finished very early, with no more vehicles leaving Hornchurch after 18:30 and typically during my two snapping sessions along the route it was the exact same vehicles which showed up and some of the more interesting ones avoided me completely! Generally speaking, the selection of buses on the 252X wasn't as interesting as on the other routes, with almost all of them being in the form of ex-Go Ahead London WVLs, which does bring a new type to the 252 although it's not like these aren't still commonplace within the capital.
|Ensignbus RML2405 is seen arriving into Romford, closely pursued by the equally iconic Spirit Of London E400|
|"Hire your transport" WVL44 is seen approaching Romford at the rear of a triple bunching on the 252X service.|
Thanks for reading and stay safe!