Crossrail related bus changes to soon begin as opening approaches

Some long-delayed bus route changes linked to Crossrail are set to happen as final preparations for the Elizabeth Line opening are met.

One such change is diverting the 180 from Lewisham to North Greenwich which is due to occur on 14th May.

The 180 will no longer head to west Greenwich but turn to the Peninsula

Instead of heading through west Greenwich and onto Lewisham it will now turn north at the Blackwall Tunnel approach flyover towards Greenwich Millennium Village then North Greenwich station and the o2.

Bus changes planned in 2018.

Changes to the 180 route in the east include extending from Belvedere onto Erith Quarry via Erith town centre. Last year this site covered plans to increase overall homes at Erith Quarry to 850.

The 180 now has some electric buses in service – but not all.

GMV masterplan. Thousands of homes being built

Severing the direct bus link between areas such as Abbey Wood and lower Charlton to Lewisham has raised opposition.

The alternative (without changing buses onto the 129 which is to be extended from Greenwich to Lewisham) is the more expensive Southeastern rail service that runs through Woolwich and Charlton then heads to Blackheath and Lewisham which runs every 30 minutes.

If SE London had similar rail fares as those over the river on c2c and London Overground, it would cost no more to use the train than the bus, but it doesn’t so higher fares apply. That also applies when changing from rail to the DLR.

Lewisham station on left

Serving Greenwich Millennium Village and other nearby areas will increase services for thousands of new homes being built and approved, including 431 last week.

Other changes

Other route changes due to be introduced are alterations to the 469 and 472 which is due to be extended from Thamesmead to Abbey Wood and connect with the Elizabeth Line.

Outside Abbey Wood station

The 469 was always a bus to avoid living in Abbey Wood given its slow and meandering nature, which looks likely to increase with planned changes.

It’s still unknown where the 472 will layover in Abbey Wood. There isn’t that much space to terminate a high frequency bus route. One possibility is heading down Wilton Road then under the flyover. I’ve only ever seen single-deckers down there such as the old B11 terminus.

Wilton Road.

The B11 now runs to Thamesmead but is planned to be cut back to the old Boiler House.

The 301 is another Crossrail-related bus change. The service was introduced in recent years to link Bexleyheath to Crossrail with a direct link to Abbey Wood and then via Thamesmead and Woolwich. That route is also due to extend to Charlton, with the first 1,200 homes in the Charlton Riverside masterplan area was recently approved.

Bus struggling through parked cars

Crossrail’s opening is imminent with numerous tests conducted using thousands of volunteers. In effect the service is now operating as it would – just with no paying passengers. Final sign off is due soon along with further software upgrades for rolling stock.





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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.

    19 thoughts on “Crossrail related bus changes to soon begin as opening approaches

    • The frequency of the 472 will be halved.

    • Was wondering why the bus stop sign at Wilton Road said 472 on it

    • The 180 changes are utterly ridiculous, butchering a well used trunk route for nothing, the Charlton corridor needs more capacity not reduced! Whoever came up with this idea should be sacked

    • Changes to 469 is going to half my capacity from Belvedere to get to Abbey Wood to commute.

    • I would .have extended route 472 to Erith Quarry via Abbey Wood and Erith Town Centre at an increased frequency. So route 472 serves North Greenwich Station, Woolwich and Abbey Wood Elizabeth Line Stations .

      Route 180 should remain Belvedere Industrial Estate to Lewisham Shopping Centre to maintain this vital bus link to Lewisham for Abbey Wood and Lower Charlton.

      I would still extend route 129 to Lewisham to provide improved links to North Greenwich Station along with the changes to routes 469 and 301.

    • I agree with you, it seems very strange that TfL are reducing capacity along the Woolwich road to Greenwich and are over bussing the North Greenwich to Woolwich corridor

    • The 301 timetable needs earlier buses from Bexleyheath, 0605 and reaches Abbey Wood 0629. I would use this, but it runs too late. A 0500/0530 start to service would be better, and would suit people who start work earlier.

    • @ Graham and @ N I totally agree with you both. The extension of route 472 to Erith Quarry via Abbey Wood and Erith Town Centre at an increased frequency would make much better sense.

      Leaving route 180 unchanged operating between Belvedere and Lewisham Shopping Centre via Abbey Wood, Lower Charlton and Greenwich Town Centre has it does now.

    • Mine too – ridiculous that they effectively halve our capacity along Abbey Road, and no mention of increased 229 services to fill the gap. It’s clear that the sheer number of bus stops along this road was intended to enable rapid, frequent bus journeys for residents to have easy access to Abbey Wood and Belvedere stations. It’s already difficult to travel west by bus to places like Woolwich and Charlton, and taking away the 469 doesn’t help.

      So now that we’ve waited close to five years for this miraculous 20-minute commute to London, I’ve still got to leave the house at around the same time in case I miss a 229 and have to wait up to 15 minutes for the next one to trundle along. Fantastic. Thanks so much TfL.

    • @ Andy Dempsey I agree more bus routes need to start earlier and finish later including route 301 many shift workers and workers who start early and finish late including NHS workers, Hospitality workers. Many of whom are on lower incomes.

      @ P and Chris Nash increasing the frequency on route 229 to compensate for the changes to routes 469 would make sense. TFL did say in fact promised when the cut bus services in Central London that they would improve bus services in Outer London..So making some small changes now like increasing the frequencies on route 229 and allowing routes like 301 to start earlier would really benefit local residents.

    • I wrote to Matthew Pennycook a while back regarding the 180 and he gave some nonsensical reply that an additional link to NG would be advantageous to the community, for who exactly? How is cutting back a vital link good for the community? It’s cutting the capacity along the Woolwich Road, the 177 won’t be able to cope with the extra load.

    • I totally agree N . The East Greenwich and Greenwich Town Centre area Ned’s more buses serving the area.Traffice along Trafalgar Road and Woolwich Road was back to back traffic this afternoon.. Route 177 will not be able to cope with the extra capacity with passenger’s being left behind at bus stops at busy times. Three fire engines on a emergency call were delayed in the traffic putting lived at risk. So if you want to reduce traffic congestion in this area we need to see improvements to bus services with route frequencies increased and new bus routes. Also the 180 needs to remain Belvedere to Lewisham as at present. Extending route 472 to Erith Quarry via Abbey Wood and Erith Town Centre at an increased frequency sounds a much better idea.

    • Absolutely agree Kevin.. The traffic in the East Greenwich area through Greenwich Town Centre and up Creek Road can be an absolute night mare with bus services and emergency vehicles delayed. This is only set to get much worse in the future with the opening of the Silvertown Tunnel.

      So we do need more bus services in the area. Also Route 180 should remain Belvedere to Lewisham Centre via Greenwich.

    • TfL sadly are tone deaf and really don’t care about this neck of the woods, I can just imagine the 177 being completely rammed in the future

      Why does Erith need a link to North Greenwich? There’s zero benefits to this

    • While i don’t see the logic of terminating the 180 at North Greenwich, people wanting to go to Lewisham could change at Woolwich and catch the 54.

    • Maybe so but this still means that Woolwich to Greenwich is about to lose half the buses.

      Why exactly does Erith need to be connected to North Greenwich? Surely they can be grateful for a CrossRail connection.

      I personally think we as locals really need to lobby harder against this pressure the MP with emails

    • @N: don’t count on Pennycook. CrossRail terminates at Abbey Wood, so people living in Erith does not benefit.

    • It’s on the same train line by two stops, more beneficial than the jubilee line meanwhile a valuable link is being severed just because some one at TfL is poor at their job and fails to understand travel patterns in the area

    • Curtailing the B11 like that seems odd – all the south Thamesmead concrete houses will be cut off from their direct route to Thamesmead town centre.


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