Thursday, 11 September 2014
By Bus It's Hard; Going From Chard 
There are two shelters on Boden Street Chard ...
... and it appears to be the same as the on-line PDF; so well done Stagecoach. A sad looking Stagecoach driver was sitting on the uncomfortable wall of the toilet block ...
... reminding us that in this remote outpost of the Stagecoach Devon empire, crew changes are costly and (presumably) done by car.
In the left hand shelter is an inadequate departure list for Buses of Somerset [BoS] 30 to Taunton.
The times haven't changed since the transmogrification of First into BoS, but neither have any of the contact details posted below in the same frame.
Here, for the record, are the correct and current contact details.
Bearing in mind the wrong-ness of the frame on the Axminster bound stop (outside the Guildhall, see yesterday's blog - read again here) it is clear that the up-and-coming BoS just doesn't care about Chard. Goodness me and luvaduck; it's over 13½ miles away; this is Chard "where be dragons"!
best worst is yet to come.
Take a look at the flag up the pole on Boden Street.
One or two problems:-
1. First Bus does not operate ANY of these routes
2. There is no 30A
3. 30 is operated by BoS
Note the re-liveried vehicles. Vinyls, what vinyls?
4. There is no 90
5. There is no 91
6. 99/99A is operated by Stagecoach
7. 202 no longer operates
8. 96 (a school journey) IS operated by Stagecoach
One final niggle. Not that long ago, the 99 and 99A were operated by smart Optare Versas ...
... but fbb saw no such luxuries. Older vehicles predominated on all the trips fbb observed.
What do we conclude?
Public transport information in Chard is appallingly bad. It costs very little to keep timetable frames tidy and up to date and wrong information (BoS service 30 to Axminster) is inexcusable. Both operators seem to be willing to accept out-of-date stuff on bus stop flags. Again, simply unacceptable.
A simple notice directing passengers between the two service 30 stops is essential and please, please, PLEASE, PLEASE send a lad with a stepladder out to sort out those bus stop flags. THEY ARE APPALLING.
What a contrast between Chard on-street information and the attractive posters in a proper BoS bus.
Which Buses of Somerset do you believe?
Next bus blog : Friday 12th September