Monday, 1 May 2017

Bank Holiday Weekend Quiz Part Two

Cliff-top terminus?

Temporary tram stop replaces a "proper" railway station.

Is it beautiful or awful? But it is still there! Where?

Used to run the 300 between Minehead and Lynton; now First bus to Porlock only.

Name the other end.

Where "reds" first appeared.

London Buses run by an Australian Company. Which?

He designed this.

Three station; but where in Europe?

And thus not "fine".

He also built electric railways.
Great Western. Narrow gauge to standard gauge interchange, good only, here.

fbb's local, but way back.

Have some Madeira, M'Dear!

Missing locality.

The real challenge is to get the answers WITHOUT recourse to the interwebnet.

Answers on Sunday May 7th
Another Closure
News broke over the weekend that Bright Bus of South Anston (near Sheffield) had announced closure at the end of the Summer Term.

Bright Bus?
The company runs a number of schools services in the greater Sheffield area, using mainly ex Hong Kong tri-axle double deckers.
Bus watchers may know the company under its previous name, MASS Transit.
One of fbb's Sheffield contacts drives for the company, so was able to confirm the rumours direct "from the horse's mouth".
 Next timetable blog : Tuesday 2nd May 


  1. There's an awful lot of contracts to find new operators for

  2. I'm sure most of the services are commercial and cater for non stat kids. As more and more schools turn into Academy's they are changing their school day to finish at similar times. All of a sudden the one bus that can operate two or even three schools cannot be in different places at once. It doesn't then take much to work out that running such services suddenly become unviable.

    1. Their biggest commitment is running services to Catholic schools which cover a wide area and can only do an out-and-back trip- so, in general, the comment of 0856 anon isn't a full explanation.

    2. That's exactly it! When I was Commercial Manager for a firm that had 25+ school runs (mostly contracted to the LTA), said LTA decided to junk the lot (except for those that carried significant numbers of "entitled" students) we took them on commercially under the proviso that we'd need to put fares up (over a few years) to commercial levels.
      Even by doing that, there were some routes that had never even come close to covering costs. We spoke to all our schools, advising them that we needed to undertake drastic surgery unless they helped us out.
      Two schools at opposite ends of a route corridor needed single deck buses due to low bridges. If one school moved their school day 30 minutes earlier and the other 30 minutes later, then we could do the business with half the number of buses and drivers, safeguard the routes and even hold the fares steady.
      Well, you'd have thought that we'd prophesised the end of the world!! Instead of two schools starting at 0830 we asked for 0800 and 0900 . . . . hardly that different. Absolutely not, was the answer from both schools.
      What happened? We pulled the buses from the school that had the least number of students travelling, and whapped up the fares on the buses to the remaining school. Two years later, those routes were pulled as well. Quite simply, we couldn't make them pay, and the prospect of new buses with DDA features sounded the end.
      Both schools created merry hell; parental petitions; complaints to the MP and the LTA . . . the lot. We simply shared the financial situations with everybody (no fear of any other company muscling in!), and they said "Um . . Oh . . I see" and that was that.

      If only schools would think outside their own boxes!! ISTR that teenagers work better if they start school later, so it could so essily have been win . . win.

      Och well . . . .

    3. I wasn't saying it was a full explanation but you cannot but wonder if the other schools who have changed their times have not helped in his decision to close. They recently cancelled a lot of services to McAuley Catholic school in Doncaster.

    4. Not long after de-reg I recall there being an argument (not just locally) about teachers pay, conditions and hours as a result of which most schools refused to accept responsibility for pupils/transport for more than 15 minutes before and after the school day.

      It put paid to some 'double running' and also journeys that had been managing to serve several schools. This was followed by schools deciding to change their hours without consultation including some still run by the LEA. Parents of course backed the schools.

      The LEA then issued clear guidance outlining the procedure that had to be followed if a change was being considered, all those who had to be involved (it doesn't just affect transport) and time-scales.

      Turning to recent events it doesn't help when a certain large bus company becoming with the letter 'A' revises the whole local network, drops some direct to school services and fails to check what times schools actually open and close.