Sunday, 17 January 2016

Catch-Up Collection

Sheffield Service 31 - Spot the Difference
fbb invited his readers to explore the differene between the two service 31s as advertised by Travel South Yorkshire [TSY], the guardian and publicist of all that is omnibological in Sheffield. To help, he included two maps ...
... which were identical. That's because Sheffield Community Transport and Stagecoach 31s follow exactly the same route (apart from city terminus). But because they use different timing points (why?), TSY have tried to merge the tables. It becomes confusing and nearly incomprehensible.

Here is an fbb version ...
... correctly showing part of the service as traversing the Loxley loop and the rest as running from Loxley only.

A Day Out from Northampton
You may remember this useful (useless) collection of leaflets at Northampton Station, many of which would be expensive if not impossible to visit by train. Correspondent Alan was intrigued by this one:-
Kelvedon Hatch is a nice easy train ride from Northampton - NOT

Alan offers couple of musings.

1. If you can pick up a leaflet about it at your local railway station how can it be secret?

2. If you are going after 25th February check travel arrangements carefully. From that date the Traffic Commssioner has revoked the licence of Townlink who operate service 21 from Epping past the bunker.
Total secrecy is assured, of course, by parking an armoured car outside an innocent looking bungalow from which access to the bunker is provided.

First Bus on the Acquisition Trail
After a number of years of disposing of non-profitable companies, it is good to see that First Bus has started on a massive buying spree. (?) Dipping deep into the comany coffers First has bought the business of Webbers of Bodmin. Not to be confused with Webbers Travel of Barnstaple ...
... or Webberbus of Bridgwater, Somerset. Already a pain in the kneecap for Buses of Somerset, three new Taunton local services started  a week ago.
First would love to see the back of them! They are in direct competition with Buses of Somerset's own town services, cut back last year and perceived as a weaker part of the company's oeuvre. They may well be even weaker now.

No; this is Webbers Coaches of Bodmin, currently operators of a few school contracts and private hire.
Bus watchers seem to think that the business isn't worth a great deal but comes with a useful depot in Bodmin.

That's The Way to Do It
fbb often suggests that the bus companies should look to firms like Tesco and start emulating their advertising and sales style. Here is a prime example of putting that philosophy into practice. Regular readers will remember that First Bus faces competition from Wessex Star on one of its prime routes in Bristol, namely the route 1 and 2 to Cribbs Causeway.
As well as increasing the frequency on Saturdays and Sundays, First has been doing a bit of subtle bill posting. Paul writes from Bristol:-

What is really spot on is that it is in the middle of Westbury-on-Trym, right opposite the bus stop for Cribbs Causeway - Westbury - Centre services, and next to the one for the other direction.

And Finally and At Last

Coventry Ricoh Arena Station open tomorrow. The local press has collected the public's enthusiastic reaction to the news that the station willl be closed when events are happening at the stadium.

Sarah Buxton: "What is the point of the station if you cannot use it on event days?"

Beth Porter: "Waste of time and money. Could have been spent on things the city ACTUALLY needs."

Mike Colbourne: "So the point of this station is?"

Peter Surtees: "For station, read stationary. Because it ain't going nowhere!"

Colin Bennett: "What a half baked situation. Just doesn't make sense."

Andy Devenport: "So yet again council screw up."

Darren Gould: "Disgrace!"

Davinder Singh Tiensa: "Joke."

Michael Mannion: "All aboard the ghost train."

Lukas Scott: "A station the public can't actually use. How very Coventry."

Mark: "So they spent millions of pounds for nothing. What a joke."

We therefore end with a view near a useless station!
That greenish sort of thing on the right is a train.

 Next X78 blog : Monday 18th January 


  1. Both look very Best Impressions to me, especially the First Bus 1 - which is superb.

    1. The First promo stuff is Best Impressions. I doubt the multi-coloured affront to eyesight of Wessex is from there!!

  2. Ensign have come in to run 21, but only between Brentwood Station and Ongar

  3. Hope First realise which Webber they've bought. Bit embarrassing if they turned up at Bridgwater only to find.....

    1. Much as they might love to buy out Webberbus (or for them to remove themselves), looks like a protracted battle continuing; think Alex Carter knows his Bodmin from his Bridgwater

  4. Fbb is a bit behind the times. There are TWO Secret Nuclear Bunkers that are Cold War attractions - Kelvedon and Sandbach. They are extensively well signed and have been so for the last 10-15 years!