Abbey Wood Crossrail bus route change cancelled – for now

Plans to switch the 469 route in Abbey Wood and Belvedere in relation with widespread Crossrail bus changes have been halted.

Plans were first announced some years ago as part of a wide ranging reworking of services. It was then revealed last week that the change on route 469 would go ahead – though that is now apparently on hold again. Plans would have seen the bus avoid part of Abbey Wood and heading down New Road towards the station. Click below for a larger view:

Bus changes in 2018. Not all have occurred

News of no change follows the 180s planned permanent diversion from Lewisham to north Greenwich being postponed as a new operator commences in October 2021 using electric buses.

Other changes announced in 2018 such as extending the 472 from Thamesmead to Abbey Wood and a curtailed B11 have also not yet occurred. New bus route 301 did begin operation linking Bexleyheath to Abbey Wood station, before running to Thamesmead and Woolwich.

There are plans to extended that to Charlton when new homes on the Charlton Riverside masterplan site complete.


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I've lived in south east London most of my life growing up in Greenwich borough and working in the area for many years. The site has contributors on occasion and we cover many different topics. Living and working in the area offers an insight into what is happening locally.

20 thoughts on “Abbey Wood Crossrail bus route change cancelled – for now

  • Hope they cancel the 180 changes too. You know, the one that will go to North Greenwich instead of Lewisham because Crossrail will be going to East London. Send answers as to how the 2 are related to TfL as I don’t think they have any.

    I wrote to Pennycook but he just said he may look into it, possibly, perhaps, and never heard anything else.

    • Sadly JR you are not likely too from either of the Greenwich Boroughs two Labour MP’s.

    • I sent an email to Matthew Pennycook regarding the ridiculous 180 changes and asked him if he could raise the issue of amending the changes whereby a compromise is met.

      The 180 runs from Lewisham to Plumstead, while a new 480 runs from NG to Erith Quarry, he said he would look into it as a possibility but not heard anything further, personally the 180 doesn’t need to be changed and I think the general consensus is that the majority aren’t in favour of any changes

  • I agree I think route 180 should remain Belvedere Industrial Estate to Lewisham Centre as at present.

    A new bus route could be introduced to serve the new Erith quarry housing development running between Erith quarry and North Greenwich stationn as part of bus services improvemennts while serving new developments at Thamesmead Woolwich Charlton.and Greenwich Peninsula.

    This new bus route could be introdued ahead of crossrail opening as crossrail is now dealyed to 2022 and could be delayed again beyond this date.

  • I agree I think route 180 should stay as it is between Belvedere and Lewisham so Lower Charlton and East Greenwich keep there bus link to Lewisham. A new bus route operating between Erith Quarry Housing Development and North Greenwich Station could be introduced.

    I think there is also still scope to extend routes 129 291 and 335 a little with in the Borough as these three routes are relatively short and use double deckers.

    I also still think the extension of route 129 to Lewisham should still go a head to take pressure off of route 108 between Lewisham and North Greenwich station. as originally planned regardless of when crossrail finally opens as route 129 will not be serving a new crossrail station as part of the route.

    • We really do need a bus from Upper Belvedere to Abbey Wood Station with Crossraiil. It is has been a problem for years. Get this 469 bus route up and running as soon as possible.

  • I thought TFL may have considered extending routes 469 or B12 from Erith Town Centre to serve the new Erith Quarry housing development.

    As route 469 would serve the new crosssrail stations at both Abbey Wood and Woolwich.

    Route B12 would link the housing development with Erith and Bexleyheath Town Centres.

  • As stated above the 180 change has been postponed with a new contract starting in October on the current route.

  • How about extending the 301 via Woolwich Arsenal Station and the proposed rerouting of the 161 via The Woolwich Centre then towards Charlton Station then either via Peninsular Park Road (following the 472) or Charlton, Victoria Way (following the 161) then to North Greenwich. Then, towards Bexleyheath, the route could be extended to Erith Quarry Housing Development. (don’t know what would be the quickest route from Bexleyheath to Erith Quarry Housing Development) It may require more buses and it will be long distance but, that way, it will combine some of the proposals and serves two Development sites.

  • Also, I do agree with the extension of routes 469 or B12 from Erith Town Centre to serve the new Erith Quarry housing development; the 291 extension (possibly to Lewisham Station/Lewisham, Shopping centre (as it was before) via Shooters Hill Road / Well Hall Road, Shooters Hill Road / Kidbrooke Park Road, Lee Green and Belmont Hill) and the extension of route 129 to Lewisham.

  • Jasper, I do believe route 291 could easily be extended back to Lewisham as it did many years ago I would change the routing slightly from the old routing. So route 291 operated via Baker Road, Shooters Hill Road, Well Hall Road, Rochester Way, Kidbrooke Park Road then back on the old routing via Lee Green to Lewisham.

    Would provide new links for Rochester Way to Woolwich, Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Lewisham. While providing extra bus capacity at Kidbrooke Village as the development continues to grow. With a new developmenst planned on the site of the Old Thomas Tallis School and at sites on the Brook Estate off of Rochester Way.

  • @jasper I think the quickest way to operate a bus route between Erith Quarry Housing Development and North Greenwich Station would be via the old 99 routing between Erith Town Centre and Woolwich via Bostall Hill. Then on to North Greenwich Station via route 472. .
    @CDT The extension of route 291 to Lewisham via Rochester Way in Kidbrooke would work really well and provide the new bus links needed to Woolwich, Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Lewisham for this area.

  • Let’s just clear this all up once and for all.

    None of the changes planned have been cancelled. They will all go ahead when Crossrail opens. These changes are linked to the opening of Crossrail so will not happen until the rail line opens. The 301 was the only change that occurred early and that was a standalone change.

    The 469 was a different issue in that the operator was issued with the incorrect specification detailing the new routing. This mistake was then realised and corrected. The only resultant issue is that the route will be operating on incorrect schedules for the next few weeks while the new ones are compiled and uploaded so you may find that buses will have to hold for a few minutes on Abbey Road so that they are on time – as they are scheduled to go on the new routing but not doing so in practice. This will be resolved when new schedules are uploaded in a few weeks. The planned change to the route is very much still going ahead and will happen when Crossrail opens – along with all the other changes.

  • Yes however, local people do not want the changes planned for route 180 to happen at all and made this clear at the time of the consultation.

    They want route 180 to remain Belvedere Industrial Estate to Lewisham Centre as now regarless of if crossrail opens or not.

    But as usual TFL and Sadiq Khan Mayor of London do not listen to the travelling public and ignore us as usual.

  • @ Bus Operations Controller.

    Thank you for the update on route 469.

    However, I agree with Kevin I think a new Route between Erth Quarry and North Greenwich Station via route 99 to Woolwich and then 472 to North Greenwich Station. would be better and provide a faster direct route.

    Leaving route 180 as it currenttly is..

  • To be honest the whole public transport infrastructure needs reviewing due to the large amount of homes already built, under construction and planned in the near future for all three Boroughs of Bexley Greenwich and Lewisham.

    More bus routes will be needed to meet demand along with improved services on both the DLR and railways.

  • I did an awful lot of complaining and contacting MP’s ect…. My job requires lots of travelling around Selkent and I don’t Drive so I use buses and a lot of them so in a week I sometimes use all of the routes in the consultation.

    TFL may also be looking at usage on the B11 with the introduction of the 301, people prefer the B11 and also it serves neighbourhoods more closely linking those neighbourhoods with Thamesmead Town centre and Goldie Leigh with Bexleyheath amongst other stops which the 301 inconveniently doesn’t serve.

    The 301 needs to go and if they really want to keep it, then extend the 472 via the current 301 route withdrawing the 472 from that strange route around Thamesmead and extending it to Bexleyheath via the existing 301 route, the 472 already covers the 301 between Woolwich and Thamesmead and because it is a high frequency route, it picks up people before the 301 does leaving the 301 largely unused, I’ve never seen the 301 full precovid and I think cancelling other routes whilst leaving this under used service in operation is a slap in the face.

    As for the 469, I will be very unhappy with TFL if they go ahead with the rerouting because it already is a slower than needed to be service because of its going round the houses routing, the 469 goes around the houses twice already in the Abbey Wood area, ok it is useful going down Sewell Road but I’m sure people can walk to Eynsham Drive, years ago it used to go straight down and the part between Basildon Road and Church Manor way is also ridiculous I’ve never seen anyone board the 469 here and dont understand why it can’t use the main roads, its walking distance!

    As for the express 161, I’m sorry to say I agree with TFL on this one I’ve never seen the need for an X161 although I never told them this or included this in any feedback or contact I had with them because maybe they could trial it out and see.

    The 180 should be left alone, a lot of people work at Erith Industrial area and its not easy to get to, the 401 stops nearby but is pretty useless to connect to Crossrail or Thameslink because it doesn’t serve Abbey Wood or Woolwich or Bexleyheath stations and its a long walk to Belvedere Station which has limited trains in comparison. The 180 should continue going to Lewisham too, if you’re working and on a low income, the train ride doubles the fare and if the train service encounters some issue such as a signal failure access to Greenwich and Lewisham is by bus only, the 177 cannot handle that on top of regular users that travel to Greenwich using the 180. Also ok there is the hopper fare, but that isn’t guaranteed for life and also the additional time it will take because you have to change buses makes no sense.

    TFL is making these changes to suit them rather than bus users, if it was for benefit of bus users and the community then they would look into problems like how does one get to Queen Elizabeth A&E after 00.30? Or if you get discharged after that time, how do you get home?

    486 24 hour weekend services now withdrawn, there are now no buses serving Queen Elizabeth Hospital after 00.30 Really?!

    I’ve suggested they introduce a N96 which will go from Queen Elizabeth Hospital to Bluewater, the purpose of this is to make sure two major hospitals (Queen Elizabeth Hospital) and (Darenth Valley Hospital) are accessible for people living in the Boroughs of Greenwich and Bexley) the route also allows travel between Woolwich and Bexleyheath and to provide Dartford with a night bus, late night workers and early morning shift workers who work at Bluewater or Dartford but live in Greenwich or Bexley can get to and from work.

    There are also poor connections between South East London towns, like why does it take so long to get from Bexleyheath to Orpington or from Woolwich to Bromley?

    TFL focuses on getting everyone to Central London and back, this isn’t beneficial for people who both live and work in the same area of London so it has an impact on the economy.

    Because of Covid, the way people work has chamber with more people working from home meaning TFL needs to cut down on getting everyone to Central London and back and focus more on local routes and services, the way things have changed may become permanent considering the substantial savings companies can make by making staff work remotely.

    Night buses have been focused on getting people to and from Central London and TFL has ignored for many years then need for local 24 hour bus services. The night time economy has changed, the amount of people going to night clubs has vastly changed with people finding cheaper alternatives with mass clubs and bars closing down.

  • Absolutely spot on Nick.

    The 180 changes are utterly ridiculous and serves no purpose, I emailed Matthew Pennycook regarding the changes and how instead of butchering the 180, they could split the route in half as this:

    180: Lewisham to Plumstead

    480: North Greenwich to Erith Quarry

    There’s no reason why this can’t be done, in fact I’m not too happy with how transportation has changed for the worst in SE London in the last few years.

    From cutting the 53 bus back to the arse end of nowhere, to removing the semi fast trains from the Woolwich line and replacing it with an all stations service, I only hope CrossRail does finally open in 2022

  • Totally agree with Nick and N.

    TFL could introduce a new route possibly numbered 369 (linked to the 469) North Greenwich Station to Erith Quarry via Erith Town Centre, Belverdere (Woolwich Road), Bostall Heath, Bostall Hill, Plumstead High Street, Woolwich, Lower Charlton, Bugsby Way, North Greenwich Station..

    Leaving route 180 Lewisham Shopping Centre to Belvedere Industrial Estate.

    In South East London we have seen our public transport services declining over the last few years.


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