Thursday, 29 October 2015

Sheffield Timetables "On The Street"?

Only Three Days Late?
 The second "Delhi" blog is postponed. 
As 1330 yesterday, fbb received a batch of PDF files of timetables for the massive route changes due in Sheffield this coming Sunday. These were promised for last Sunday but had not appeared on Monday. fbb's correspondent suggests that these leaflets are now "readily available".

Reports from "on the streets" are awaited to confirm how "readily" and "available" they are.

It would appear that First Bus is printing timetables in its own house style (or nearly so) for routes that it will be operating exclusively.

This for the 75 and 76 is a typical example.
The 75 runs from Jordanthorpe with a complicated figure-of-eight turning loop which is inadequately explained by the timetable and really needs a map.
The other "leg", the 76, is a simple turn round at the pub and shopping centre on the Low Edges estate.
These routes and route numbers are unchanged in the new scheme of things and come together at Woodseats and follow their traditional route through the city and via Burngreave Road to Firth Park.

Here the big change happens. Instead of going to High Green (75) or Meadowhell (76) the two routes now run to Shiregreen, previously services 47 and 48.

But there is a snag. The 75 trundles round the estate in a large anti-clockwise loop, whereas the 76 oes 'tutherway, as they say oop north.
Disappointingly this is simply not explained on the leaflet. 
And, of course, there is no map. In the original "partnership" scheme, these were to be numbered 7 and 8 but pressure was brought to retain as many "old" route numbers as possible.

Frankly, a leaflet like this is not satisfactory. You need to have a copy of the new PTE map to hand to understand it and timings round the various loops are just guesswork. 

But, at least, First has made a reasonable effort to tell people what they are doing.

It is too little and far too late.

fbb as also received samples of timetables for joint services. In essence these are mainly routes where First and Stagecoach were in ferocious head-to-head competition, later mitigated by the first phase of the "partnership" scheme.

Service 25 and 25A in the south of the city have become 24 and 25.
But on the east, the 25/25A via Manor has been reduced with the The other half (numbered 24) taking up the routes of the former 22 via Manor Park.
So far so good. Under the old scheme the 25s served a little nibble of newer housing at the Woodhouse terminus named after its "main" road, Spa Lane ...
... and they still do. Except it is called Skelton Lane in the timetable.

Or do they? Here is the brand new partnership timetable as it is (supposedly) "on the streets" today.
A long line of dashes against Skelton Lane. Indeed very few 25s appear to go that way and those that do are at very odd times. Arrivals there on Monday to Friday are at:-

1752, 1807, 1828, 1858, 2009, and 2335 

Not so if you want to go from Skelton Lane to City. Now there are no buses at all.
No, it's not a weird service; all 25s go via Spa Lane/Skelton Lane but the "partnership" only shows a time if the bus is finishing its work for the day there. But at least a few lucky passengers can get there.

There is a nasty taste in the mouth here; the foul flavour of South Yorkshire PTE. Indeed, fbb's contact at the heart of the partnership's pathetic publicity did hint hesitantly that joint services would use timetable data from the PTE.

What a stupid move - BECAUSE IT'S WRONG.

How about the joint 52/52a at Darnall, north-east of the city centre.
The red line shows the joint route and it is immediately obvious that Stagecoach buses go a different way through the Darnall shopping centre.

Isn't it?

Well it is according to the timetable.
Both operators call at Main Road/Greenland Road, here in fact:-
This stop has been the "Darnall" stop for countless generations. 

So what (or where) is Main Road Waverley Road? It is the next stop along the road towards Woodhouse. Here it is:-
And we are asked to assume that First bus 52As simply drive past. They don't stop there.

Of course they do -

And fbb hasn't yet received a version of the 1 and 1A service which was revealed as
in this blog a week ago.

In a true spirit of Partnership (chortle, chortle) we now have examples of:-

Timetables from First Bus for their "own" routes ...
... differently styled timetables for joint services ...
... and, so far, nothing for Stagecoach exclusive routes. fbb has made contact with his contacts and will report as soon as possible.

 Next bus blog : Friday 30th October 


  1. Earlier this week I called into the Travel Information Centre on Arundel Gate and asked if they had any timetables for the forthcoming changes. 'No'. Would they be getting any? 'We should be'. When? 'Probably later this week'.

    Not deterred I walked down to the Interchange and asked the same question at the customer services desk. Again nothing available, although the racks behind the counter did contain one or two from the minor operators (for existing services). Same questions, different answers! They told me there probably wouldn't be any timetable leaflets at all, but I could always download and print them myself.

    Passing through again yesterday on the way to the station, I asked again. Different member of staff. Different answer. 'We should be getting them tomorrow'. For all services? 'I don't know but we should betting some'. We shall see. They also had on the counter a series of leaflets for different areas of Sheffield entitled 'Changes to your bus services in (e.g.) North East Sheffield'. I believe these are the ones intended for door-to-door distribution, but nothing of the kind has yet come through this Sheffield door!

  2. I have had a leaflet through the door today. I have an interest in Omnibology e easy sense of what it says, so what of my elderly bus using neighbours? Fat chance. The remaining staff at the Interchanges are not directly employed by SYPTE but by the company that they outsource cleaning services to. When the Rotherham Bus Partnership was but 3 days from launch I asked for information from one of these staff members at Meadowhall - "Partnership? What partnership might that be...?" I rest my case.