Proposed changes to routes 21, 143, 263 and 271

We are proposing to restructure routes 21, 143, 263 and 271 and introduce a new school and night bus route. We want to hear your views on our proposals. Our public consultation is now open, and you have from 22 November 2021 until 9 January 2022 to have your say on our suggested changes.

We want this consultation to be accessible

We are proposing to restructure routes 21, 143, 263 and 271 and introduce a new school and night bus route. We want to hear your views on our proposals. Our public consultation is now open, and you have from 22 November 2021 until 9 January 2022 to have your say on our suggested changes.

We want this consultation to be accessible to everyone. There is an Easy Read version of our materials in the ‘Documents Section.’ There is also an Easy Read version of our survey.

London is constantly changing, and we therefore continuously review the bus network to ensure services reflect changing demand and deliver value for money. In central and inner London, increased rail capacity and improved active travel options continue to change the way people travel. Demand on many central and inner London routes was declining prior to the coronavirus pandemic, and while the pandemic’s long-term impacts on demand are currently unclear, ridership is not expected to fully return to pre-pandemic levels in the near future.

We are therefore reviewing services in central and inner London to ensure they reflect current and projected usage. We want to make sure our bus services match up with passenger demand whilst ensuring key links across the city are maintained. To do this, some structural changes to routes are required.

Our proposals would help to make the bus network simpler, more efficient and well connected, as well as ensuring resources are better invested and aligned to passenger demand. They would help reduce operating costs - helping ensure that we can continue to invest in the services that customers rely on. Londoners would continue to experience an accessible, regular and reliable bus service.

If you want to read more about this consultation and why we are proposing these changes before you complete our survey, you can read the ‘About this consultation’ summary in the Documents section. You can also view maps of the current routes and proposed changes and find the Equality Impact Assessment for the scheme in the Documents section.

What are the proposals?

We are proposing several changes to four bus routes with the aim of simplifying the bus network, while retaining key bus links across London and even providing new links between some areas. Our main proposal is to restructure three routes, removing route 271 between Highgate Village and Finsbury Square and rerouteing routes 21 and 263 to provide a new bus structure for the local area, operating along the 271 route. We are also proposing changes to route 143 and to introduce a new school route and a new night bus route.

We have summarised our proposals below, but you can read more about the changes and rationale in the ‘About this consultation’ summary in the Documents section.

Our proposals are as follows:

  • Route 271 would no longer run between Highgate Village and Finsbury Square. Routes 21 and 263 would be rerouted to provide a new structure for the local network. The proposals would enable the removal of the bus stand on South Grove in Highgate Village as it would no longer be required
  • Retain and extend the night service on route 271, renumbered ‘N271’. The new night service would run on the current 271 route between Moorgate and Highgate Village but would extend from Highgate Village to North Finchley. This would provide a new night bus on the A1000 between East Finchley and North Finchley - a major road where there is currently no night service
  • Reroute the 263 via Highgate Village. The 263 would still run between Highbury Barn and Barnet Hospital but would be rerouted through Highgate Village instead of via Archway Road. This would retain existing passenger links on route 271 between Highgate Village and Highbury Corner, and create new links between Highgate Village and North Finchley, Whetstone, High Barnet and Highbury Grove
  • Reroute the 143 via Archway Road. This would replace passenger links on Archway Road currently provided by route 263. It would also create new links between Archway Road, East End Road, Finchley Central, Hendon and Brent Cross
  • Introduce new school route 620. This would run between Archway Station and East Finchley Cemetery via Highgate Village at school start and end times. It would replace the current school days only buses on route 143 between Archway Station and Bishop Douglass School
  • Cut back route 21 from Newington Green to New North Road and extend to Nags Head so it operates between Holloway and Lewisham Shopping Centre. This would create new links between the section of route 21 south of Moorgate and Holloway Road, Canonbury Road and New North Road. Passengers could still use route 141 between Newington Green and London Bridge in place of route 21

Why are we proposing this?

Our review of bus capacity has identified surplus bus services on the Holloway Road, New North Road and Southgate Road corridors. This means we are providing a high number of bus services along these routes at high frequencies, but bus usage is far lower.

Route 271 is currently a 24-hour service, operating between South Grove in Highgate Village and Finsbury Square at Moorgate. The route predominantly operates along Holloway Road, where it shares parallel routes with several other bus routes. The southern end of route 271 is unique in that it is the only route on Canonbury Road and the north end of New North Road.

Route 21 runs on the same routeing as route 271 between New North Road and Moorgate, and route 263 has the same routeing as route 271 between Archway and Highbury Corner on Holloway Road.

Our proposals would help to simplify the bus network and provide a frequency of service that better matches passenger numbers, while retaining key links for customers. It would also provide new bus journey opportunities with the creation of new direct links, and a new night bus service on the A1000 between East Finchley and North Finchley.

Have your say

We are running a public consultation about these proposals and would like to hear your views. The consultation is open from 22 November 2021 to 9 January 2022. You can respond by completing our online survey. To do this, you will need to register with your email address. Your details will be kept secure and only used, with your permission, to update you about the outcome of the consultation and our next steps.

If you prefer, you can email your comments to haveyoursay@tfl.gov.uk or write to us at FREEPOST TFL HAVE YOUR SAY (Routes 21, 143, 263 and 271) no stamp needed.

You can also ask us questions throughout the consultation, using the ‘Questions’ tool below.

Ask us your question about this consultation

Please let us know if you have any questions that will help you respond to the consultation. We will then get back to you. Note this tool is not for responding to the consultation, please do that via the survey. 

Please note that any questions you ask may be visible to others and will be subject to moderation. Any personal information will be kept confidential but your user name will be displayed. Further details on moderation are available here

Questions asked may be publicly available after the consultation has closed and we may also include them in the form of a report on the results of the consultation exercise, but any personal information will be kept confidential. Your personal information will be properly safeguarded and processed in accordance with the requirements of privacy and data protection legislation. For further information, please visit our privacy policy

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Page last updated: 02 December 2021, 16:47