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January 10 2018
By Mel Holley

A former routeone editor, Mel has more than 30 years’ experience in road and rail transport journalism.

Thames Valley brand to be resurrected

Reading Buses is to take over the commercial Dedworth-Windsor-Slough route 2 from 29 January, after First’s withdrawal from it and a number of other services across the area.

The route will run hourly under the new 'Thames Valley' branding

In addition, the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead announced yesterday (9 January) that it is organising replacements for the other withdrawn routes 10/11 and 15. These will include additional peak time, very early morning and late evening buses for Dedworth as well as an all day Sunday service.

The route will run hourly under the company’s new 'Thames Valley' branding, featuring modern bright red buses with leather seats and free Wi-Fi.

Between Windsor and Slough a two buses per hour service will be provided through the red bus and Green Line 702 which Reading Buses took over from First late last month.

In addition, the route will be extended to provide a link to Legoland Windsor from Slough and Windsor during school holidays. 

This will operate alongside the daily Green Line 702 which already serves the attraction in part replacement for First's 200 route that has also been withdrawn amongst these latest changes.

This builds upon the recent announcement that Reading Buses, under its new 'Thames Valley' operating banner, starts operations in Slough on route 5 to Cippenham, in addition to evening journeys on route 4 to Maidenhead and Sunday and public holiday journeys on route 6 to Wexham Park, all under an initial six month emergency contract from Slough Borough Council starting on Saturday January 20 to replace First following its withdrawal.

Says Reading Buses CEO Martijn Gilbert:  “It's a good fit alongside our existing 702 Green Line route between Slough and Windsor and it adds further journey opportunities under our new Thames Valley operation serving the east of Berkshire.

“We'll be bringing our award-winning operating approach with a high quality fleet of modern buses and working hard on marketing and publicity to grow the route and make a long term success of it.

“We look forward to working with local stakeholders, including the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead and Slough Borough Council.

“This further development is a good fit with our strategy of looking at good quality integrated local transport on a pan-Berkshire basis aligned to economic activity across the region and adding further value to our company and its operations.” 

Thank you Thames-Valley Buses for taking over Slough Route 5 that First Berkshire buses abandoned. It was a pleasure to travel on one of your great nippy little buses today. Maybe you could institute a Slough to Reading direct route sometime soon.
Seymour Alexander

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