Tuesday 1 September 2009
This route was taken almost a year before its posting and, unusually, I was on my own. Like the 86, which we were to travel much later, the journey was remarkable for many miles of straightness.
A short walk from the 28 brought me to Wandsworth Plain, where a selection of 87s stood, and we were off by 11.50. We went at a smart pace, particularly compared to the lethargic 28. After Wandsworth Town Hall, we went pretty well straight until we reached Vauxhall: East Hill becomes St John’s Hill and in due course Lavender Hill and Wandsworth Road. The first time our driver had to steer at all was to get into and then out of Vauxhall Bus Station. We swept past Clapham Junction Station, and Arding and Hobbs (now Debenhams).
The Artesian Well has a handsome Triton on its exterior, though its website reveals it is not really a pub for people our age.
The Postmen’s Office proves to be Clapham Sorting Office. Being alone limits the chances of taking photographs, but the website will show you what a quaint building it is.
On every occasion that we stopped at a traffic light, the driver hooted as soon as he got green, to encourage whoever was in front. The scheduled time for the trip to Aldwych is 45 minutes, and this is clearly rather tight.
After Vauxhall we crossed the river to proceed smartly along Millbank. No-one wanted to get off for Tate Britain, but as we reached Parliament Square and Whitehall there was more passenger movement.
We were a little slowed by the continuing works up Whitehall. The barricades are, I take it, to protect our civil servants from their employers, the governed, which seems an interesting use of the taxpayers' money. We were not seriously delayed, however, and we panted into Aldwych within the set time but only just.
When they make me Dictator of all Buses, one of my first acts will be to shorten the time allowance for the 28 and lengthen the 87’s.