The Routemaster has returned to the UK's streets with a makeover by Thomas Heatherwick.
It is known simply as “the new bus for London”, but the vehicle that enters service on Monday is essentially the return of that much-loved London icon the Routemaster. This symbol of the capital was retired in 2005 and consigned to a ghoulish afterlife on countless mugs and T-shirts. Mayor Boris Johnson pledged to bring it back, and so he has. Our mayor may have no strategic vision for the city, but he has a talent for the popular gesture – and Routemaster II is one. Being able to hop on and off the back of an open bus is a Londoner’s birthright, he might argue, so get hopping. But what is more encouraging about this move is the demonstrative return of good design to the capital’s infrastructure.