Thursday, 8 October 2015

Partnership Proposals Perplex Passengers [3]

The Daftness of Dore (part 3)

But how can they call to for help if they have not understood? And how can they understand if they have not heard the message? And how can they hear if the message is not proclaimed? And how can the message be proclaimed if the messengers are not sent out?

Biblical Paul (Saint Paul for some) called for missionary zeal in his letter to "The Romans" (Chapter 10 verses 14 and 15). In just over three weeks a substantial number from amongst a population of over 600,000 will find their travel around the city of Sheffield significantly changed. South Yorkshire PTE has preached about "improved bus services", a lie so huge that its directors have grown extremely long noses Pinocchio-style. Very few will find any improvement.

fbb is grateful to Man of Kent for his comment on yesterday's blog.
At last, a modicum of truth from Bus-man Bob.
Substitute "not making a big enough profit" for the more anodyne "not sustainable" and you have the truth the whole truth an nothing but the truth.

Bus Companies are in business to make a profit, and, like Tesco, this needs to be pursued energetically and ruthlessly if the company is to satisfy the power behind the board-room, namely the big Stock Marker investors. These are the "grey suits" that control our industrial policies today.

Given that Sheffield has had too many buses for 30 years; that "competition" has been costly in terms of profitability, the "Partnership" has always been about making more money (losing less money?) and not about serving the public.

On a small number of frequent sections of routes, regular users will hardly notice. A drop from every 4 minutes to every 5; from every 5 to every 6 etc. etc. will not be painful. But it is at the extremities that the horrors are at their worst.

The above are facts of life. But how to deal with the unpalatable side of those facts?

The only source of information on the changes is the PTE (Travel South Yorkshire) web site. The home page is all about current operation, with journey planner, real time departures and lots about season tickets. But there is a timetable finder.
That's a start. What does it tell us as we search for the bus changes at Dore? The first bus we get is a train!
This doesn't serve Dore village. Next comes the M17 ...
... which doesn't run into the city. Then comes six bus services ...
... of which C6 links Dore to Abbeydale Tesco on one day a week. Next come the 240/241 ...
... which (a) don't serve Dore Village and (b) will stop running for the Winter on 25th October. Finally we have 97/98 ...
... which doesn't serve Dore Village either.

So far so NO good! Of service 70, the only service to the village, there is not a word. Neither is there any mention of changes with just over three weeks to go. But, hold fast cap'n. If you are quick enough you may spot one of the irritating scrolling headings.
If you are even more astute (so not for beginners, then) you may know that you can click on it. It takes you to a standard Travel South Yorkshire list. Not surprisingly this is large (and growing) for November 1st. 

Happily as this list has grown, more information can be gleaned. BUT details posted have appeared in no particular order so the overall picture is often incomplete. But the panel for Service 70 (to be withdrawn) arrived yesterday.
It might have been a little more helpful to give some detail; because, for example, service 6 may replace part of the "Sheffield to Dore section" but it doesn't go to Dore.
But perhaps the 81 does?
At last; but whatever you do, don't look for an 81 from Dore ...
... because they are 82s. Except when they aren't!

But if we want to get from Dore to the Hospitals and University (as per the soon to be withdrawn 70) we would need the 181, perhaps.
But not very often.

But we can't use that route on a Saturday or a Sunday. Now do we all remember fbb's map?
We might decide to walk up to Dore Moor and catch the 271. But it does not get a mention from the fount of all (mis)knowledge.

There is a new 272 timetable on-line ...
... but with no mention of a 271 via Hospitals and Uni. Surely they haven't changed the timetable on 25th October, then again a week later. That would be excessively stupid.
But that is what has been done. Absolutely bonkers.

But Derbyshire's excellent web site gives us both. Here is the November 1st version.
And look at the journey with the black diamond at the top.
It's a 271 (apparently) but DOESN'T go via the 271 route! In fact it diverts into Dore Village where it turns, like Cinderella's pumpkin, into an 81 into city.

Shouldn't that be an 82 to city?

But that makes FOUR route numbers to think about if you are waiting for a bus at Dore Village.

  81 - generally arriving buses only - except when they are 82
  82 - generally departing buses only - except when they are 81
181 - Monday to Friday peak hours to Hospitals and Uni
271 - one journey which isn't a 271 and NOT to Hospitals and Uni

And if you want to know why your buses might be an 81 or an 82, you can read the description on the timetable.

Changes will be made to the route and times of services 81 and 82 and to the times of service SL2.

Service 81 - will operate between Stannington, Nethergate and Dore, partially replacing service 70. During Monday to Saturday most daytime journeys will then return from Millhouses to Stannington, Nethergate.

Service 82 - will operate between Stannington, Hall Park Head and Millhouses, partially replacing service 83. During Monday to Saturday most daytime journeys will then return from Dore to Stannington, Hall Park Head.

Get it? Got it? Good!

Please remember, dear reader, that none of this information will be published in hard copy by the PTE. There are now no enquiry offices anywhere in the City.

And are the bus companies providing on-line timetables?

First Bus?
Your buses in Sheffield from 1 November 2015
Full information on all your buses in Sheffield from 1 November 2015
From 1 November there are changes to lots of buses in Sheffield
Click here to see the full bus network and frequency table from 1 November
Services Affected: 25, 35A, 44, 45, 52, 57, 79, 79A, 83, 83A, 87, 88, 120, 122, 123, 265, SL, SL2, SL3

"Full information"? This panel is all that there is! "Click here" - and nothing happens! And fbb is not at all sure when these changes will happen. Some time in November is the rumour. Stagecoach should be brave enough to tell us.

T M Travel
All this company's timetables in place on-line.

And are the bus companies producing timetable leaflets?

Probably not - a deathly silence so far.

And how can they hear if the message is not proclaimed? And how can the message be proclaimed if the messengers are not sent out?

Beyond belief!

 stop press   The Travel South Yorkshire version of the November 1st timetable for 271/272 etc. appeared on-line yesterday afternoon. This week's prize is awarded for whoever can work out where the buses go in the city centre.
fbb has no idea!

 Next railway blog : Friday 9th October 


  1. There is a small bus enquirery office is sheffield interchange opposite WH Smith.

    1. ......but it's only staffed by Customer Service staff whose, shall we say, don't offer a full enquiry office-type service, and who seem rather reluctant to supply what leaflets are available.
      On the positive side, leaflets have been produced by First and Stagecoach for the few routes that have had changes since April; TM also did one for the upgrade of the Bakewell routes.

  2. My eldest is so impressed with public transport in Sheffield that he has learned to drive and acquired a car. He walks to work but has a desire to go out and about in the evenings.

  3. That city centre routing on the 271/272 leaflet is a Classic !

    Do they really and truly think that people will be able to work out where the buses go?

    Pull the other leg, TSY !

  4. What is a fount?

    1. source;person or ​place from which all ​information on a ​particular ​subject comes


  5. How you getting on with that journey planner you tried your hand at creating?

  6. There have been fewer circus's in Endcliffe Park this year but Sheffield City Council have encouraged SYPTE to try and organise a city wide event at the start of November. The first Monday of the new network will be one almighty farce - no one knows what is going where, when or under what service number. The media headlines will be unbelievably negative and the paying passengers will be far worse off. Will Dave Young and his mates be worried? Never! A top heavy, over bloated organisation with pretentions of being TfL (without the money) isn't actually bothered about the passenger. We have to hope they never get their hands on a brewery...