Chelsham Bus Garage

A tribute to all those who worked at the Bus Garage at Chelsham, Surrey, England. 1925 - 1990

Chelsham Bus Garage was opened on Tuesday 20th January 1925 by The East Surrey Traction Company and served the travelling public in the Chelsham and Warlingham area by operating local buses until 27th October 1989, One local route, the 403 had been worked from Chelsham Garage for the whole period. Chelsham had a reprieve and the following day began operating the London Transport Contract Route 196, which ran in The London Area from Norwood Junction to Brixton, with peak hour trips extended to Islington, this ran for six months and Chelsham supplied buses and crews for the last time on Friday 27th April 1990. Chelsham Garage continued for a further two months in an engineering capacity until the doors finally closed on Friday 29th June 1990.

I have always had a particular interest in the bus routes that operate south from Chelsham along the B269 road across Worms Heath and Botley Hill and since the route changes from 3rd September 2011 no public bus services run between these points. My own personal observations date from 1981 when my family moved close to Chelsham Garage. Prior to that all information has been forthcoming from Official Bus Company Timetables, Publicity and London Omnibus Traction Society publications (I have been a member of L.O.T.S. for many years)

Chelsham Bus Garage

From 1934 until closure in 1990 Chelsham Garage was allocated the garage code CM

Please press the bell or scroll down to go to the full CONTENTS LIST




Please click on the sections below for a nostalgic look back into Chelsham Garage

 NEW  Chelsham Bus Garage Sports Club trophies, shields and prize winning Cups and a Retirement cross stitch souvenir

Winners Cup, Bowls, Darts, Snooker prize winning trophies and a retirement cross stitch souvenir for John Brialey

Chelsham Bus Garage in the 1920's

Photo showing two PS type open top double deck buses inside Chelsham Garage. Chelsham at this time only had space inside for 8 vehicles.

1925 Summer timetable - Routes 403 and 404

Summer 1925 Timetable pages and Fare Charts for routes 403 and 404 from the East Surrey Official Timetable book

Bus Companies and routes operating from 1925 - 1990

Details of all of the bus companies and a chart of all the routes that operated throughout the 65 and a half year life of Chelsham Garage from The East Surrey Traction Company through to London & Country.

Start and finish dates of Chelsham routes

Summaries showing all routes operated by Chelsham Garage, listed by Start date, Finish Date and Length of operation, in fact "The long and the short of it all".

Maps showing routes and places served

A total of 31 diagrammatic maps showing the growth and decline of Bus and Coach routes operated by Chelsham Garage from 1925 through the WW2 years to 1990.

Bus and Coach allocations 1938 - 1990

Look back at the buses and coaches that were shedded at Chelsham Garage through selected years. Single and Double Deckers and the Coaches, they are all there.

Memories of those who worked at Chelsham Garage

A list of over 500 names of staff from Chelsham Garage (with pictures where these have been kindly made available). There may be someone you remember, please have a look.

Local Railway competition

The Southern Railway in the Warlingham area including details of the proposed Southern Heights Light Railway that would have served Chelsham and Warlingham.

Chelsham Garage Staff Canteen

A look at the Cutlery from London General, London Transport, National Bus Company and London Country, also have a cup of National 440 Tea while you are there.

Chelsham Garage Sports and Social Club

See the Chelsham Garage Sports Club Members Honours board, Cricket and Darts team photos, an old photo of the East Surrey Chelsham Depot Football team 1927/28 and Chelsham First Aid presentations and outings.

Old photos contents page

Family and Friends have been looking through their drawers and photograph albums and have come up with some interesting pictures from the past.

Handshake for Conductor George "X"

Mystery photograph of Conductor George "X", why was this picture taken, has anyone got any ideas ?

Diversions to scheduled bus routes

What has happened when things went wrong along the route and how the buses got through.

Private Hire

A list of some of the exotic destinations that were visited by Coaches on Private Hire from Chelsham Garage.

Special Bus Services - Biggin Hill Air Show

Chelsham Garage supplied buses for the special services to and from Bromley, Croydon and the Biggin Hill Air display.

Special Bus Services - Epsom Races


Chelsham Garage supplied buses to convey passengers to and from Epsom Station and Epsom Downs for the Races.

Special Bus Services - School Contracts

Special routes dedicated for the conveyance of school children only and not for use by the general public.

Visiting buses at Chelsham Garage

Maidstone Corporation Atlanteans, City of Portsmouth Leyland National 2's and a North Western Atlantean.

Celebrity Buses at Chelsham Garage

A list of buses and coaches that meant something special to me personally.

Open-Top visitors at Chelsham

Unusual visitors in the form of Open-Top Training buses at Chelsham Garage and in the Chelsham area after the closure of Chelsham Bus Garage.

Service stock at Chelsham Garage

An album of pictures of Lorries, Vans and other service stock seen at Chelsham Garage.

Tree loppers at Chelsham Garage

London Country and (would you believe it ?) Southdown Queen Mary tree loppers seen in and around Chelsham Garage and Warlingham Green

Uniform Issue buses at Chelsham Garage

The ex RLH and the ex LNB bus that replaced it along with a selection of uniform badges as worn at Chelsham.

Chelsham Garage Engineer's album

Views including some taken inside the garage of Buses undergoing servicing and repair, also accident damaged buses.

Snow scenes around Botley Hill - 1947

Some fantastic old black and white photographs of the area around Botley Hill, Surrey including Leyland Cub Buses.

Snow scenes at Chelsham Garage

Pictures of snowbound buses and coaches during the 1980's, when it snows at Chelsham it really snows.

The lighter side of buses at Chelsham Garage

Fun pictures of buses in Farleigh School playground, Buses ready for Croydon Carnival, Bus pull and more at Chelsham.

Chelsham Garage bus dump

An album of views of withdrawn and unservicable buses and coaches stored at Chelsham Garage during the 1980's.

The mass exodus from Chelsham - October 28th 1989

A summary of activities with lists of where the buses went, also photographs of the buses that headed north from Chelsham Garage to Bee Line Buzz Co. and North Western.

102 years of Bus Routes 1921 - 2023

A look back with full details of every route that has operated in the Chelsham and Warlingham area from 1921 before the opening of Chelsham garage in 1925 right through to the present day, they are all listed here.

From Buses at Chelsham to Trolleys at Sainsbury's

The transformation of Chelsham Bus Garage into the J Sainsbury Supermarket, including an animation of it taking place, before your very eyes.

Chelsham to Sevenoaks by Bus through the years

A summary of the different routes that have connected Chelsham and Warlingham, directly with Sevenoaks. A journey which involves 4 different bus routes if attempted today.

RT and RF buses at Chelsham Garage by Adrian Figgess

Adrian Figgess has kindly supplied some excellent black and white photos of RF and RT types at Chelsham Garage.

What Bus is This, passing through Warlingham

An unidentified vintage bus with the name BOJANGLES, has me puzzled, perhaps you know what it is.

I proudly display below the following awards won by this website

Link to The BUS-STOP an excellent website by Ian Smith, The BUS-STOP is an outsider's view of London Transport buses, mainly in the 1930-1980s Please click here >> Ian's BUS-STOP website <<

IRS Top Link Award

Institute of Railway Studies, University of York, TOP LINK AWARD 2001

Southbus - Site of the Month

UK Bus Site - Site of the Month October 1998

All Photographs, Graphics and Animations are by Alan Edwards

Links to all my other web pages