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Thursday, 7 July 2011

7th July

Well there can only be one blog today and it is about the events of six years ago.

On that day I had been in Edinburgh for the G8 summit. At First we had a significant number of double-deckers on good rates parked at the summit as waiting rooms for the Police. Huge revenue and no miles.

On the morning of 7th July I flew back to London arriving soon after the troubles had started. I was faced with no Heathrow Express and then no Piccadilly Line. Early news was sketchy.

Of our First management team Nicola Shaw was in Leeds and Dave Kaye on his honeymoon. I did get a taxi towards London but the driver warned me of huge congestion. On the way the taxi driver tried in vain to call his family - so much so that before the elevated section of the M4 we were stopped by the Police.

He pleaded his case but also said he had me in the back in great need to reach HQ. They then led us under blue lights all the way to Central London. By the time I arrived the facts were increasingly obvious. The transport system in London had been the victim of a major terrorist attack.

London was very quiet that afternoon and evening but the following morning the buses and Underground services all ran.The resumption of ordinary transport in London was a huge boost for the capital in the aftermath of this terrible event.

This morning Mike Brown, MD London Underground and London Rail, and I, laid a wreath on behalf of all of TfL, at the 7th July memorial in Hyde Park. Later we visited all of the scenes of the events and for my part I took a bus southbound past Tavistock Square.

The day before these atrocities, as I saw live from my hotel room, the IOC had awarded us the Olympic Games. Now, in less than 400 days, that event will take place here in London. Much has changed in those years. But very much of what we are now delivering and will be doing so next year is as the result of the brave and amazing way in which London's rail and bus staff went back to work immediately after 7th July.

We are proud of everything our staff did during this terrible day and afterwards. We remember this especially today.


1 comment:

  1. Perhaps you have always wanted to see the most important landmarks in London, and maybe even venture beyond the capital city? Or you would like to visit the residences of the Royal family in Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, Balmoral and Sandringham? Can you see yourself standing at the edge of 10 Downing Street, where many pivotal political decisions were made that shaped the history of Great Britain?