Huge Boost for River Bus Services From Chelsea Harbour

As new operator KPMG Thames Clippers guarantees service for five more years


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River Bus services from Putney to Blackfriar via Chelsea Harbour will more than double from October, as Transport for London appoints KPMG Thames Clippers to be the new operator of the Putney to Blackfriars route from the start of October.

Thames Clippers will provide a significantly enhanced River Bus service with two thirds more services on weekdays on modern, fully accessible, high speed catamarans.

The new contract guarantees the service, which is used by hundreds of Londoners every weekday, for another five years, and is the result of close collaboration between the Mayor’s office, TfL and Wandsworth Council.

Wandsworth Council has approved a budget of £33,000 to support River Bus services and, in partnership with KPMG Thames Clippers, future plans include making vital improvements to a number of piers, which will ensure all the services are fully accessible.

The council's cabinet member for transport, Councillor Russell King, says: "The Putney to Blackfriars service is currently used for about 15,000 journeys per year but this could rise significantly with continued investment and support - helping take the pressure off our roads, buses, trains and tubes."

Assembly Member Richard Tracey, who has recently been reappointed as River Ambassador by Mayor Boris Johnson told our sister site " The expansion of the Thames Clipper service upstream to Putney is a great victory for everyone who’s been pushing for a boost to river transport west of central London, so I am delighted that it is finally here.  

" I have been of the opinion for many years that the Thames offers great potential to be used as an integral part of London’s transport system. Today’s announcement of a near trebling in high-speed catamaran services to Putney opens up the option of river travel to many, many more people.

“Furthermore, this announcement comes hard on the heels of Boris’s opening last autumn of the new Clipper pier at Vauxhall. This October will see the start of the new service, so that within about one year clipper services have extended from Westminster all the way to Putney – and that must be seen as progress in anyone’s book.”


Peter Hendy CBE, Commissioner for Transport for London says: " Thames Clippers bring with them a wealth of knowledge and understanding of operating riverbus services on the River Thames, which will benefit the many hundred who will use their services every day.  With improved integration with other riverbus services, I am sure more people than ever will make the most of what the river has to offer."

River Bus passengers will benefit for the first time from being able to pay from their Oyster pay as you go balance, and there will be discounts for Travelcard holders. For regular passengers season tickets are available on a weekly, monthly, half yearly and yearly basis.

April 4, 2012