Friday, 23 October 2015

The Horrors of High Green (4) ...

A Reminder of the Partnership Claim ...
... and a reminder of the new 1/1A timetable layout, courtesy of Travel South Yorkshire.
And some of the problems listed in timetable order.

Problem 1
ALL service 1 buses call at Hazlebarrow Road, the start of a complicated figure-of-eight at the southern terminus.
Hazelbarrow Road is the right hand turn off Jordanthorpe Parkway. The timetable only shows those buses that begin their shift at that stop. Additionally the panel does not mention Batemoor although Stagecoach buses show(ed?) that destination on their blinds.

Problem 2
Charlotte Road/Priestley Street is NOT at Highfield.

Problem 3
Heeley Bank Road/Olive Grove Road is NOT at Lowfield

Problem 4
This extract might suggest that the 1 and 1A follow different routes in this area. They are exactly the same. The problen is that the two "partners" (snigger snigger) use different "time points" on their schedules. Here are the two stops on google maps, top left (Priestley Street) and bottom right (Olive Grove Road).
At the crossroads with the A61 (Queens Road) is an ASDA store. Why can't both operators used the same location, and call it ASDA Queens Road (Priestley Street)? Simple and helpful to the passemger - shock horror!

Problem 5
No stop at the main Firth Park shopping centre? Silly! First bus and Stagecoach are using different (but inconvenient) stops as time points. Even sillier!

Problem 6
This is the ONLY point (southern termini excepted) were the 1 and 1A diverge. So what's the problem? Possibly a bit of fbb pickiness, but it would be better to use "Ecclesfield Common, Morrisons" and "Ecclesfield Village, Church Street" to mirror local usage and make it clear that Morrisons is not IN Ecclesfield..

Problem 7
This line shows all blanks except for one journey which, on schooldays ONLY, turns off the main road and into the School layby.
Rather than messing up the whole timetable presentation, a simple lettered note for that journey (On schooldays calls at Ecclesfield school layby and runs 4 minutes later to High Green) is all that is needed.

Problem 8
There isn't anything wrong with this stop name but "Chapeltown Station, Lound Side" would be so much more helpful.

Problem 9
Again, as per Ecclesfield School, a long line of blanks! One terminating journey at 0009 uses this line. WHY bother? Who cares which side of the road they will use when they get off?

Problem 10
This is utterly daft. Here is High Green Cottam Road/Foster Way:-
And here is High Green Cottam Road/Briary Avenue:-
Now surely the folk at TSY towers weren't thinking that the 1 and 1A went opposite ways round the loop, like the present 75 and 87 do? Or perhaps one of the operators isn't too sure which way their "joint" buses will go. It's the same stop stupid, on the left. It used to be called High Green The Fosters ...
...until the so-named block of flats was demolished three years ago.

Problem 11
Another long line of dashes with an occasional time at the end of the working day. You may have guessed that this is the end of the loop and times are added only for those buses which finish their shift there.
All buses stop there.

Problem 12
This is Thompson Hill, the first stop in the loop. If you are foolish enough to wait her for a specific bus you might be unlucky because it has arrived a bit early and is chuntering at Cottam Road time point further round the twiddle. 
A realistic time point at the start of the loop would be helpful to passengers.

Apart from that (and the rubbish PTE map!)  the new on-line leaflet is OK.

And, joy of joys, there's only 19 (nineteen!) pages of A4 to download.

Are the operators' on-line timetables any better? Not so far, because they don't show the service as "joint", they only show "their" journeys. More Partnership spirit - NOT!

But improvements have been promised.

The fbbs are on the Isle of Wight for a few days with neighbour, guard cat and neighbour's dog on Seaton property protection duty. But upon arrival in Newport yesterday A REAL TIMETABLE had popped into the chubby one's "in-box".
It is a proof (hence "Replacing services xxx and yyy", actually 22 to Nether Edge and 76 to Meadowhell). It really does need a map but it is better than the nothing the PTE produces.
The leaflet also includes daily, weekly and monthly ticket prices for First and All Operators plus the usual panel of boring corporate guff.

fbb excitedly awaits a copy for services 1 and 1A.


 Next blog : Saturday 24th October 


  1. While I agree two descriptions of the same stop is silly (and precisely why there is a national database with a single name for each stop) there are legitimate reasons for not using certain stops as timing points.
    This relates to punctuality monitoring, and means there are locations we can no longer use because they are not suitable for buses to wait if they are early. Yes, I know it is not necessarily passenger friendly, but the law has to take precedence.
    Interesting to note the number of stops that are not protected by bus stop clearways - at some of those illustrated, it would be impossible to get the bus to the kerb. Always interesting to see what the public authorities' attitude to bus services is.

  2. None of the "silly" time points at First park is suitable for "waiting". A layby opposite the Methodist Church would be ideal but, of course, some car parking spaces would be lost! Both unhelpful locations are on busy but quite narrow roads with local parking pressure. I wonder what law requires bus companies to be unhelpful to their customers? If it really exists it should be repealed! We need to start prioritising Public Transport in these essentially practical ways.

  3. The mess-up on 1/1A is not unique.The largely unaltered evening service on 120 which is shared between the two operators has retained separate timing points despite both operators running an identical route at that time. Doesn't anyone proof-read this stuff?

    1. Yes Dennis it is proof read. The problems occurs because the two operators use different timing points. This being just one of the many indicators that this is not a 'partnership' merely a convenient arrangement for First's desire for service cuts. Shame on Stagecoach for going along with it.

  4. The problem is that the compiler of the timetable doesn't use a brainm(essential piece of bus publicity equipment long abandoned by the industry). There is absolutely no need to publish different time points. The use of "estimated" times is feasible for publicity use even if the (legal) registration is different. In most cases the actual times at the differing locations are compatible or easily tweaked by one minute. Traffic Commissioners aka VOSA will use the registered times.

  5. According to a recent speech by Robert (once Bob) Montgomery, Stagecoach head honcho, the partnership network was "not sustainable"; i.e. then wanted to cut costs as well.

  6. I did mean "brain" rsther than "brainm". Typed on a wobbly table in the B&B bedroom!

  7. Why don't you just admit you've no idea what you are talking about?