Bus route extension to ease overcrowding for Riverside School pupils

The new Riverside School complex on Renwick Road

The new Riverside School complex on Renwick Road - Credit: Archant

Pupils at Riverside School are set to benefit from additional buses with an extension of the EL3.

Transport for London has agreed to extend the route on schooldays to deal with the high level of public transport demand when pupils leave the school.

The extension will apply to two services in the afternoon only, departing at 3.14 and 3.24pm.

The Renwick Road campus opened last year and will eventually host around 2,700 pupils across three schools - a primary, a secondary and a special school.

It is served by the EL1 route, but it was soon discovered that the service could not cope with the number of pupils. The school had to stagger the time pupils left to ease congestion and allow them to fit on the buses.

Barking MP Dame Margaret Hodge has been involved with trying to solve the issue since October, when she held a meeting with TfL and the school.

Since then, TfL was investigating the issue and has now announced it will introduce additional afternoon buses.

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Dame Margaret said: “I am delighted that after four months of campaigning, Transport for London have finally agreed to deliver additional bus services for Riverside School.

“In October I invited TfL to the school to hear first-hand from parents and teachers about the lack of services at finishing time.

“The announcement will go a long way towards ensuring that there is sufficient capacity at the end of the school day for pupils to get home. I am pleased that TfL have listened.”

Headteacher Andy Roberts said: “Riverside School is the only public building on Barking Riverside and it has been a challenge to get pupils home at the end of the day with only one bus service, the EL1, serving the school.

“The two additional EL3 buses at the end of the school day are a real breakthrough and I’d like to thank Margaret Hodge for campaigning to make our case heard by TfL.

“Finally, thanks to TfL for listening and making this positive change to the service to enable our pupils to get home quickly and safely at the end of the school day.”