Route 612 ran between Mitcham Fair Green and Battersea Princes Head
Passing through: London Road, Tooting Broadway, Garratt Lane and York Road
Route journey time: 32 minutes Service interval 5-8 minutes
Service introduced on 12 September 1937 - Ceased on 30 September 1950
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Cabul Road [Battersea Terminus layover].
Trolleybuses were turned via a triangle of roads, comprised of Battersea Park Road, Candahar Road and Cabul Road that contained a small park. Trolleybuses on layover stood on the offside of Cabul Road to avoid obstructing the houses on the other side of the road, something appreciated by the residents.
Note the notice on the loo entrance - very typical of its time.
A ticket to ride
The September 1937 conversion was
unusual in that it included three tram routes which were truncated and not
fully replaced, the idea being that the full route would be changed at a
late date. Tram routes 12/26/28 in their shortened version all lasted until
the first stage of "Operation Tramway" in 1950 and trolley routes 626/628
lasted until the July 1960 stage. Various factors influenced the removal of
the 612. One was that, in its trolley form, it was very much a local route
and, except for a couple of miles, was duplicated by the 630 and the
argument was that, by converting it, the link lost in 1937 would be
restored. Also, Wandsworth depot only had a small allocation of TBs for the
route and it seemed more sensible to remove them when the depot was
extensively rebuilt for use by buses.
Site visitors may be unaware that, while the 612 existed, there was a stretch of trolley wiring which never saw regular working in the area. It was from the corner of Grant Road just north of the big Clapham Junction railway under bridge, where the 626/628/655 went round to their terminus, along Falcon Road to join the 612 wires at Princes Head. It was obviously put in originally with an eye to the conversion of the 34 but finished up as a way of getting vehicles to Wandsworth depot when required.
Notes written by Geoff Banister on 25 July 2000
From: "Stan Durban" <StanDurban@aol.com>
I used Route 612 regularly during the early 40's. At one period the route was diverted at Summerstown via either Franche Court Road or Aldren Road to Burmester Road and line of route Garret Lane. Just wondered if anyone else knew of this incident. Your site brought back some good memories for me, part of my teenage years and subsequently when I worked at Merton Garage.
From: "George Chapman" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Your Picture of the trolleybus brought back some good memories. I Lived in Shillington Street, Battersea, about 200 hundred yards from where the photograph was taken.
From: "BERYL" <BEJOE@ntlworld.com>
Just found your site.
Is it possible to obtain a print? My aunt lived crossed the road from the trolleybus stop. I have lived in Battersea all my life and remember going to Mitcham to get to Cashalston; this picture brought back lovely memories of Battersea and I would like to find more of the old place to let my children see where I came from.