Thursday, March 29, 2007


Just digging through James Dellingpole's "How to be Right", flagged up by Dan Hannan a couple of weeks ago. (I note that Dan would like it, it quotes him approvingly a a couple of occasions, as it does Richard North of EU Referendum fame).
Anyhow, I for my sins, used to be a London Transport bus conductor (19 and 22 routes if you need to know) and thus have a very soft spot for Routemasters), and this entry in the book had me whooping.

Routemaster Bus
It was a design classic uniquely suited to London's streets. Everybody loved it. You could hop on and off whenever you wanted. You could stand on the platform, grab on to the pole and lean out with the wind on your face. There was a conductor on board to help you feel safe and dispense homespun West-Indian charm, which is more than your typical harrased bus driver is willing, or able, to do. It transformed an ordinary journey journey by public transport into something liberating and enjoyable with just the slightest frisson of devil-may-care risk. The Routemaster bus was durable, handsome, efficient, popular and fun. "Only some ghastly dehumanisedmoron would like to get rid of the Routemaster", Ken Livingstone correctly observed in 2001 - which is why he had to ban it obviously, obviously.

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