The council’s campaign to save the 19 bus has paid off – with Transport for London (TfL) confirming the vital route linking Battersea to central and north London will not be scrapped.
Wandsworth Council has been campaigning for six months since TfL first published proposals to axe the route, which is used by thousands of people each day.
Under the proposals the route would only have run from Finsbury Park to Holborn, where it would have terminated.
The council has been lobbying to save the bus since November, and in February the council’s deputy leader and cabinet member for transport Cllr Jonathan Cook presented a petition to TfL signed by more than 2,200 residents and businesses.
He also wrote to TfL with the results of a survey carried out by the borough’s transport planners. This showed that passengers would need to change buses on 5,200 trips whereas previously their journey was direct – this is 18 per cent of all journeys taken on the route.
And the council produced videos to show how much local people value the route and how important it is to link residents to the West End and underground services. Scrapping it would have meant many passengers, including older and disabled people, would have faced longer waits at bus stops, more changes and longer journey times.
TfL has today written to the council to confirm that the route will remain. Cllr Cook has welcomed the news: “The 19 is a key route and local people were very concerned about losing it, especially because of the lack of transport options in the area and the expected increased demand due to new developments such as the Royal College of Art.
“I am delighted that TfL has seen sense and listened to the view of Wandsworth residents and businesses.
“The people of Wandsworth can rest assured we will continue to stand up for their interests and fight for the transport infrastructure the borough needs and deserves.”