35px London Buses
Operated by Metroline
Garage Holloway
Vehicle Dennis Trident 2/Plaxton President
Volvo B7TL/Plaxton President
PVR 30
Start Friern Barnet
Via Muswell Hill
End London Bridge
Length 9 miles (15 km)
Level 24-hour service
Frequency About every 6-8 minutes
Journey time 45-81 minutes
Day 24-hour service
Night 24-hour service
Adult single fares
Oyster 90p
Cash £2.00
peak vehicle requirement
Transport for LondonPerformance

London Buses route 43 is a Transport for London contracted bus route in London, United Kingdom. The service is currently contracted to Metroline.


The 43 commenced operation on 3 August 1912, as a daily route between Highgate (Archway Tavern) and London Bridge Station via Holloway Road, Upper Street, Angel, City Road Moorgate, Bank and London Bridge. Quite soon afterwards, on 19 August 1912 it was extended daily to Muswell Hill Broadway via East Finchley and Fortis Green Road.

On 11 September 1913 a daily supplementary 43A was introduced between Highgate (Archway Tavern) and London Bridge Station, but the Sunday service on this route was withdrawn in November 1913. On 29 June 1914, the 43A was extended daily to Peckham Rye (Kings Arms) on Mondays to Fridays via Borough High Street, Great Dover Street, Old Kent Road, Trafalgar Road Hill Street and Rye Lane, as well as being introduced on Saturdays and Sundays between Muswell Hill Broadway and Peckham Rye.

On 25 October 1914 the 43A was withdrawn as a wartime economy, but on 7 December 1914 it was re-instated as a daily route between Colney Hatch Lane and London Bridge Station, although the Sunday service was once again short-lived, being withdrawn in January 1915. On 2 April 1915, the 43A again became a daily route, being extended northwards on Sundays as from 16 April 1916 to Friern Barnet (Orange Tree). On 16 July 1916, the 43A disappeared again.

The plain 43 had become a stable route, seeing few changes, but on 29 March 1918, it was extended southwards on Sundays to Brixton (Prince of Wales) via Elephant & Castle and Kennington. The following year, the Sunday service was further extended to Kenley Hotel via Streatham, Croydon, and Purley as from 13 April 1919. This lasted until 28 December 1919, when the 43 was withdrawn completely on Sundays. For the 1920 Summer season, the 43 was introduced on Sundays between Muswell Hill Broadway and Caterham (Old Surrey Hounds), but when the summer was over, the Sunday service was cut back to terminate at South Croydon (Swan & Sugar Loaf), Caterham becoming the Summer Sunday and Bank Holiday terminus.

On 1 December 1924, a new system of route numbering on London Buses came into force under The London Traffic Act of 1924. This made the Metropolitan Police responsible for bus operation and route numbering in London. The new system was designed to make route numbering easier to understand for the travelling public. In fact, the reverse was the result, as can seen by the following list of the routes that replaced the 43, 43A, and 43B.

43 group routes:- 43 remained 43, 43A renumbered 143, 43B renumbered 144. This was further complicated in that all these routes had short working suffixed routes. The plain route number being only used for journeys for the whole length of the route. 43 Colney Hatch Lane - South Croydon (Swan & Sugar Loaf) (Sundays); 43A Colney Hatch Lane - London Bridge Station (Mondays - Saturdays); 43B Muswell Hill Broadway - London Bridge Station (Short-working); 43C Colney Hatch Lane - Streatham Common (Greyhound) (Short-working); 43D Highgate (Archway Tavern) - South Croydon (Short-working); 43E Moorgate - London Bridge Station (Short-working); 43F Highgate (Archway Tavern) - London Bridge Station (Short-working); 143 Hendon (Church End) - Addiscombe (Sundays); 143A Hendon (Church End) - London Bridge Station (Mondays - Saturdays); 143B Hendon (Church End) - Streatham Common (Greyhound) (Short-working); 143C Highgate (Archway Tavern) - Addiscombe (Short-working); 144 Arkley(Arkley Hotel) - South Croydon (Swan & Sugar Loaf) (Sundays); 144A Arkley - London Bridge Station (Mondays - Saturdays); 144B Arkley - Elephant & Castle (Short-working).

This situation remained until 3 October 1934, when the newly constituted London Passenger Transport Board instituted its own numbering system, which generally re-instated the situation previous to December 1924, apart for route 143, which by then had developed into a self-contained route, thereby keeping its route number. The 43 now ran: Friern Barnet - London Bridge Station (daily) extended (Sundays) to South Croydon (Swan & Sugar Loaf).

In the following year, the 43 was withdrawn on Sundays as from 21 April 1935 with a new Sunday only route 43A introduced for the Summer months, between Friern Barnet and Croydon Airport via the 43 routing to London Bridge and then via Brixton, Streatham, Norbury and Purley Way. The 43A was withdrawn again as from 6 October 1935 when the 43 was re-instated on Sundays between Friern Barnet and South Croydon (Swan & Sugar Loaf) albeit via Croydon Town Centre. The Sundays only 43A was introduced again in 1936 as from 12 April, with the 43 becoming a Monday to Saturday route again, working until 10 March 1937, when the 43 was again introduced on Sundays to replace the 43A, but now also via working via Purley Way to Croydon AIrport.

After the outbreak of the Second World War, when economies in fuel consumption had to be made, the 43 became a candidate as nearly all of its route was covered by parallel tram routes and other bus services. As from 15 November 1939, the 43 was withdrawn on Monday - Fridays except peak hours between Muswell Hill and Friern Barnet. It was also withdrawn throughout on Monday-Friday evenings as well as on Saturday Afternoons and evenings. On Sunday evenings, the route was cut into two sections, being withdrawn between London Bridge Station and Streatham Garage.

A light relaxation came during the summer of 1940 when the Sunday evening service between London Bridge and Streatham was re-introduced as from 28 March, but this only lasted the summer and was withdrawn again from 24 November. A further retrenchment occurred on 6 April 1941 when the 43 was withdrawn south of London Bridge Station on Sundays. It was replaced by parallel services and a Sunday extension of route 115 between Streatham Common and Croydon Airport, which had already provided the Monday to Saturday service between these two points.

Two years later, on 21 April 1943, a small improvement to service levels was made, when the route was re-instated on Monday to Friday evenings between Muswell Hill and Friern Barnet. The service on the 43 had become very complicated: It now ran between Friern Barnet - London Bridge Station (daily), but at different times. On Mondays to Fridays: London Bridge - Muswell Hill with a peak hour extension to Friern Barnet. An evening service was also provided Muswell Hill - Friern Barnet. On Saturdays: London Bridge - Muswell Hill with an a.m. Peak Hour extension to Friern Barnet. No p.m. service. On Sundays: London Bridge - Friern Barnet. This level of service remained until 1946.

By 1950, the route had settled down to be a daily service between London Bridge and Friern Barnet, but with evening restrictions to the service on Mondays to Saturdays. Towards the end of the decade, in the aftermath of the Busmen's Strike of 1958, London Transport needed to make economies and these also affected the 43. From 30 November 1958, the Sunday service was withdrawn and was replaced by an extension of route 133 to Archway. This provided the Sunday Croydon and Brixton to Islington and Holloway service that was lost during the war. On Mondays to Fridays the 43 only ran until 20:30 on Saturdays until 14:30.

On 8 November 1961, stage 12 of the trolleybus replacement scheme took effect with trolleybus route 609, being replaced by the 104 which paralleled the 43 from Archway to Moorgate. In this scheme, the service on the 43 was increased, but on Saturday afternoons the service was cut back to City Road. The Saturday afternoon service was further cut back to Angel as from 23 January 1966.

London Transport's Busplan 78 scheme intended to make bus routes in London less complicated. From 28 October 1978, the 43 became an all-day Monday Saturday Friern Barnet to London Bridge service. In the 1980s, from 28 July 1984 until 21 June 1986, garage journeys to and from Finchley Garage could be used by passengers. A year later, on 14 July 1987, the 43 was converted to one-person operation.

In an effort to take buses where people wanted to travel, as from 2 February 1991, the 43 was extended on Sundays to Liverpool Street Station via Moorgate. At the same time it was withdrawn on Sundays between Muswell Hill Broadway and Friern Barnet. From 31 January 1998, the service once again became a daily Friern Barnet - London Bridge service. On Sundays the route was diverted between Old Street and Monument via Shoreditch and Liverpool Street Station.

From 6 November 2004, the Sunday service via Liverpool Street Station was withdrawn, buses then reverting to the Monday to Saturday routing and as from 2 February 2005 the 43 has become a 24 Hour daily route between Friern Barnet and London Bridge Station.

Current routeEdit

Route departing Friern BarnetEdit

Route departing London Bridge Edit

Previous route 43s in LondonEdit

This has been the only route to carry the number 43 on a motor-bus route in London.

There was also in London:

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit

List of bus routes in London

1-99 | 100-199 | 200-299 | 300-399 | 400-499 | 500-599 | 600-699 | Letter prefix | Night only

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