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Where Does the Name “Knight Bus” Come From? 

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The Harry Potter Canon

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“Knight Bus” is a play on “Night Bus”—Night Buses run through the night in London and, after the Tube and trains stop running (around midnight)* are the only public transport available. They are a very welcome sight when they (eventually) turn up to take you home, and are the traditional red double-deckers, so it can feel as if a knight in shining armour has come to rescue you. The roads being clearer at that time of night, once you are out of the centre, the bus bounces along at a considerable pace, for a bus, tree-branches rattle along the roof and you’re sure the driver’s never going to make that corner (but he always does) so the whole experience is not unlike the Knight Bus – apart from the comfortable beds, panelling and chandeliers, of course! I also love the name Ernie Prang—”prang” is old RAF (based on Malay, I think) slang for “crash”, extended to road traffic, and is associated with a rather insouciant attitude to crashes, as in “pranged the Jag last week—what a bore!”. The Knight Bus is another example of JKR finding the magic in the everyday, or, in this case, every night.

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Effective in the Fall of 2015 Transport for London is beginning WEB LINKNight Tube Service on some lines.

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