Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Partnership Proposals Promulgated [3]

Continuing the fbb assessment of the publicity for the revised services due at the end of the month under the Sheffield Bus Partnership, fbb looks at the route descriptions that adorn every leaflet.
To help with context, here is a map showing bus services in the Walkley and Crookes suburbs, roughly to the west of the City Centre.
For the record, this map was extracted (but modified) from one of the new network maps as mentioned in yesterdays blog (read again).

Back in the "good old days" bus timetables used to be accompanied by a list of roads (urban routes) and towns and villages (rural routes) to help the passenger. Route 95 has this in 2012:-
Notice, first, that this list is entitled "stopping points"; but they are not stopping points by any stretch of the imagination, even an imagination as strange as that emanating from Travel South Yorkshire [TSY] towers. In his meeting last November with TSY boss David Brown and key managers of First and Stagecoach, fbb proffered the opinion that these lists were wholly misleading and thus, not to put a fine point on it, useless.

But everything, fbb was told, would improve under the mutual chumminess of the new Partnership.

So coming up is a full list of "Stopping Places" for route 95 which is shown as an out-and-back timetable because of the big one-way loop in Sheffield city centre ...
... which fbb has amended by adding the stop names to help the passenger understand. Help the passenger understand, TSY? Perish the thought!

 TSY's List of "Stopping Places"   for route 95
Walkley, Tinker Lane,  Bole Hill Road, Walkley Road, South Road, Howard Road, Barber Road, Crookesmoor, Crookes Valley Road, Winter Street,  Bolsover Street, Sheffield Centre,  Gell Street, Glossop Road, West Street, Leopold Street, Pinstone Street, Furnival Street, Paternoster Row, Sheffield Interchange, Flat Street, Church Street, West Street,  Glossop Road, Bolsover Street, Crookesmoor, Winter Street, Crookes Valley Road, Barber Road, Commonside, Howard Road, South Road, Bole Hill Road, Walkley, Tinker Lane

 fbb's thoughts and corrections 
Walkley, Tinker Lane : It's not really "Walkley", see yesterday's blog (read again), but as it has been thus since 1956, maybe the name should be retained. fbb would prefer "Tinker Lane Walkley".
Walkley Road : As there is no equivalent stop in the opposite direction, perhaps this should be omitted from the list?
South Road : Now this should be "Walkley South Road" because this IS Walkley
Crookesmoor : The problem here is the Crookesmoor is a district of Sheffield and by no stretch of the imagination is it a "stopping place". Better would be "Crookesmoor Barber Road".
Bolsover Street : Not wrong, but it might be more helpful to use "Bolsover Street for University"

But what comes next is preposterous.This ...
... is University Square, located, surprisingly, at the University (that's the real one, attended by fbb; not the upstart Hallam thingey). It is not, as described by TSY,
Sheffield Centre : Neither is Gell Street or Glossop Road in Sheffield Centre
West Street : Might just squeeze into the Sheffield Centre category but would be better called "West Street City Hall" as that is the name of the equivalent tram stop.
Then, and only then, do we enter what might be defined as "Sheffield Centre". Do we really need to know that? Isn't it obvious? If not, there is surely a better form of words to communicate the fact that a series of stops is situated in the City Centre.
Paternoster Row : Here the addition of "for Railway Station" would help passengers.
Thus we arrive at our "terminus" in Pond Street Bus Station; sorry Central Bus Station, sorry again, Sheffield Interchange.

And so we set off back to Walkley. Incorporating these changes into the TSY list we get the following with a few emboldened names to aid clarity.

 fbb's List of "Stopping Places"   for route 95
Tinker Lane Walkley,  Bole Hill Road, Walkley South Road, Howard Road, Crookesmoor Barber Road, Crookes Valley Road, Winter Street,  Bolsover Street for University,  Gell Street, Glossop Road, West Street for City Hall, then via the City Centre stops:- Leopold Street, Pinstone Street, Furnival Street, Paternoster Row for Railway Station, Sheffield Interchange, Flat Street and Church Street. Returning to Walkley via  West Street,  Glossop Road, Bolsover Street for University, Winter Street, Crookes Valley Road, Crookesmoor Barber Road, Commonside, Howard Road, Walkley South Road, Bole Hill Road, Tinker Lane Walkley

Which leaves us with one last, unexplained, conundrum. What are "stopping places"?
Buses stop at bus stops, so a list of "stopping places" ought to be a list of bus stops. But in the minds of the TSY creators of the "improved" leaflets, it isn't. Here, for the record, is a list of "stopping places" on route 95, but, to save space and utter boredom, only stops for journeys to the Interchange are listed.

Tinker Lane Bole Hills
Bole Hill Road Rangeley Road
Rivelin Street Bole Hill Road
Heavygate Avenue
Walkley Road
Walkley South Road
Hoole Street South Road
Howard Road Duncombe Street
Commonside Howard Road
Crookesmoor Barber Road
Crookes Valley Road
Winter Street
Bolsover Street for University
Gell Street
Glossop Road
Mappin Street West Street
West Street for City Hall
Leopold Street [C]
Pinstone Street Moorhead [C]
Furnival Street [C]
Paternoster Row for Railway Station [C]
Sheffield Interchange [C]
Flat Street [C]
Church Street [C]
------------------------
[C] = City Centre

Although opinions may differ, for most Sheffielders this ...
... (namely stops around Castle Square) would be "Sheffield Centre". For the service 95, that would include Flat Street and Church Street.

So, TSY, how are your "stopping places" defined?

But, in comparison with previous pre-Partnership leaflets, no change and  No improvement .

 Next Bus Blog : Thursday 11th October 

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