Man on the Battersea bus is a feature in the Battersea Society’s magazine Battersea Matters. It’s essentially a printed blog post, which began when the new editor asked me to write a regular rant against the iniquities of modern life as experienced in Battersea. We toyed with various titles – ‘The Man Who Sees’, ‘A Look at Life’ etc.
However, we eventually decided to go for a variation of the Man on the Clapham Omnibus (an example on the left) – that fictional legal construct – a reasonably educated and intelligent person, well, man actually (it was first used in 1871) – who could be expected to give a sensible and logical answer when asked to judge a legal argument.
So I became the Man on the Battersea Bus. I’ve been allowed free rein to write about what I want, always remembering that the Battersea Society aims to be politically neutral in public, so on subjects like Brexit I’ve kept relatively quiet. That can now change.
I always try to bring myself back into Battersea at some point, and even occasionally mention buses.
The Great Bus Journeys of the world feature was started by the editor herself – and then I took it over, so the Man on the Bus has two identities, someone on a real bus travelling at some point through Battersea, and someone who was a fictional legal construct.
This is not a website about London buses. There are plenty of those out there for those who like that sort of thing. There are descriptions of every bus route and its history and pictures of every bus which ever travelled any route.
All I will say is that as far as I can see the London public transport system for all its faults (underfunding, overcrowding etc) is still the best in the country. Try catching a bus on Sunday in any provincial town, or going from a village to a nearby town on any day after six pm if you don’t believe me.
And if you are old and grey in London you get a Freedom Pass which allows you to travel for free on pretty well any form of public transport throughout London (which is a big place). And children travel free on buses, tubes, trams, and the Overground.
And that’s enough about buses. And about me. On with the blog…