Two Routemasters on route 253 in September 1983. ©TedQuackenbush
The AEC Routemaster is a front-engined double-decker bus that was designed by London Transport. A pioneering design, the Routemaster outlasted several of its replacement types in London, survived the privatisation of the former London Transport bus operators and was used by other operators around the UK. In modern UK public transport bus operation, the old-fashioned features of the standard Routemaster were both praised and criticised. The open platform, while exposed to the elements, allowed boarding and alighting in places other than official stops; and the presence of a conductor allowed minimal boarding time and optimal security, but with greater labour costs. Despite the retirement of the original version, the Routemaster has retained iconic status, and is considered a British cultural icon. Many have survived and can still be seen operating on heritage or tourist routes and at museums.
(Information provided via Wikipedia)