Sunday, 11 November 2012

The 15 Puzzle [Part 2]

fbb is off on his travels today, unaccompanied by Mrs fbb who was away last week. The trip is to Sheffield to meet up with a couple of old chums and to spend a day exploring the new Sheffield Partnership bus network. So to Sheffield this afternoon and evening, courtesy of Stagecoach (Southwest Trains and East Midland) and a dribble of London Underground. A whole day pottering around on Monday then returning Tuesday. Overnight is at the Travelodge Richmond (Sheffield, not North Yorkshire or London).
It looks pleasant enough but is next to the busy Parkway, the main road linking Sheffield with the M1. Hey ho for a quiet night NOT. There appears to be a Little Chef attached but the information is unclear.
Oh well, it's all part of life's rich tapestry. 
See also The 15 Puzzle [Part 1]" (read again)

Back to the puzzles of Brijan service 15 to Hamble
But view the map for the reverse direction and things look a bit different! On the way back, according to Hampshire CC's timetable the route serves Netley.
So it is best thought of as a sort of circular. So far so good. A second glance at the timetable shows the outward times to Hamble and the return times via Butlocks Heath and Netley Yaverlands.
But, dearie me alas and alack, were you to set off from Hamble or Netley you would never get to the Superstores. The return journeys only go as far as Freegrounds Avenue, some 9 minutes bus time from the Hedge End shopping experience and a good 20 to 30 minutes on foot depending on age and decrepitude.

This is what bothered your profoundly troubled blog author. It troubled him so much that he awoke at 0300 one morning and immediately started thinking about the disturbing 15 puzzle. How very sad is that? The answer was to go to Brijan's own website and see what the bus operator thought it did.
And, hooray, Brijan thinks their buses run from the Superstores and to the Superstores. So that's the big part of the 15 puzzle solved. Hants CC have boobed!

Like the sliding block puzzle of 15, getting one block in the right place often disturbs two others; very frustrating. We have now sorted out the route (a big loop at the southern end) and the corrected destination at Hedge End. But there are other niggles.

Here is Yaverland Netley (note to Hants and Brijan, NOT Yaverlands) ...
... nowhere near the centre of the community. Surely the main stop by the shops should be used as the time point? These are on Victoria Road and there is a post office and another co-op round the corner in Station Road.
Someone really needs to compose a more helpful timetable!

And whilst doing so, there are a few further corrections. It's Tesco Windhover, not Windover; aka Tesco Bursledon. It's Hobb Lane, not Hobbs Lane and it would be nice to know which the main Hedge End stop is. Is it Freegrounds Avenue, Hobb Lane or Barleycorn? Then  Traveline has come up with a further bit of obfuscation ...
... Hedge End Mapleton Road, a stop name not used by anyone else!

The centre of Hedge End is usually referred to as the Barleycorn ...
... a rather picturesque pub somewhat overshadowed by scrappy shopping development. And, by the way Traveline, the Superstores are not, and never have been, at Wildern.

For the record (and for the sanity of anyone foolish enough to try to use the service) here is an fbb timetable for the Monday to Friday service. Saturday is the same without the first and last journeys.
So it can be done nicely. Because it isn't done nicely by anyone, the dreaded Traveline can't cope with a journey from Hedge End to Netley ...
... makes you get off at Hound, cross the road here, left to right, ...
... and wait 15 minutes, in the wind and rain, for the same bus!

Daftness in the extreme.

 Next Bus Blog : Monday 12th November 

1 comment:

  1. And there is one more complication with the Hants County Council timetable book for Eastleigh and Hedge End. As you point out, the Council timetable for the 15 leaves out part of the northbound route, from Freeground Avenue to the Hedge End Superstores. But the timetable does show the service calling at Windhover Tesco, in both directions.

    Now, if you look at the map in the Council timetable book, it's the other way about. According to the map, the 15 does run both to and from the Superstores - but it doesn't divert to call at Tesco, in either direction.

    Presumably, the timetable is wrong about the Superstores, but right about Tesco - and the map is vice versa.