Friday, 2 October 2015

Of Course it Wasn't - But ...

Modern scholarship suggests that Joseph's coat was not "multicoloured" but "embroidered and with long sleeves" and given symbolically to the oldest son as a mark of his status as head of the family to be. Joseph's biblical brethren were narked because Joe was a little squirt and markedly not the first-born, i.e. oldest. Except he was the first-born. Jacob had "enjoyed" a complicated experience of sexual encounters at the conniving hands of his father-in-law Laban. But his first and true love was Rachel, conquest number four instead of his desired number one! Joe was the first-born to Rachel.

But what has this go to do with buses?

It used to be simple. Most "country buses" were green or red. Corporation buses offered a little more variety but red and green were still common favourites.

In Cornwall, green was the colour of Western National, so-called "Tilling" green to be precise.
It was a rich and dignified colour for an important public service. But privatisation from 1986 onward brought experimentation and variety.
Western National's band of red and blue flags was something very different from green and cream.
But soon, corporate identity and national liveries became the order of the day. First came up with the least satisfactory of any "national" paint scheme, rapidly dubbed "Barbie" after the multi talented and costumed doll.
She did tend towards pink, but never off-white and rarely purple. or was it dark blue?
Under the new regime a new (or better labelled "refreshed") livery emerged which fbb and many other bus watchers felt was somewhat insipid and a bit of a non event. Large "area" names incorporating silhouettes of local buildings adorned the sides ...
... reduced to plain pink where non urban area names prevailed.
Meanwhile, down in Cornwall, regarded by many as the "fag end" of First's empire, passengers were rewarded by ...
... a bit of half-hearted "First Kernow" and not a lot else. Variety was the spice of Cornwall life with a runoured shared livery with Buses of Somerset ...
... and another feeble First Kernow above the door. Then came the sudden demise of Western Greyhound and more green.
But a different green, of course. Or mabe something radical like a touch of "Fal River" blue?
Perhaps similar to the First Bus Truronian livery?
Time passed and nothing definitive appeared. A First Kernow web site manifested itself on-line in Buses of Somerset style but in traditional First Bus post Barbie colours and replicating the blocky name style as on bus sides above.
But earlier this week an epiphany epiphed. At a Cornwall transport "show" in Newquay something very different was on display with pictures posted on the First Kernow Facebook Page.
It was, broadly, green and was titled "BusKernow" ...
... a bastardisation of English and the dead but being-revived Cornish language. Why not the alliterative Kyttrin Kernow? Much more intriguing!
The full tag, easier to read on the pale green, appears to be ...
... the best fbb could concoct in the limited time available; based on pictures taken indoors and under artificial light. The darker green has the look of First's new "GWR" train branding about it.
That may be intentional, to encourage integration. Should that be the case, it will be a real revolution to have  busKERNOW  information on GWR stations.

What does fbb think of it, as far as he can tell from his armchair in sunny Seaton?

It's different. If it can be applied quickly (not at the snail's pace of Buses of Somerset) it will make huge a difference to the image of the bus company in Cornwall.

But your chubby and opinionated blogger doesn't like the dark green; too dark and not green enough.

Otherwise 8 out of 10 for effort.

Or is this yet another "experiment"?

"The bus carries a new colour scheme which we are going to be consulting customers, partners and stakeholders on. We're looking for a new colour scheme and brand for our bus services across Cornwall, and are looking for feedback on this experimental green colour scheme."

 Next blog : Saturday 3rd October 


  1. A move in the right direction for First. This was the kind of thing hoped for when First originally talked about a new livery and local identities. Just a shame that the new First Kernow website is not advertised on the main First Devon, Conrwall etc website

  2. The main Cornwall, Devon etc site still shows all the former timetables for Plymouth...