Saturday, 3 March 2018

Let It Snow NOT!

A Song from First Bus in Great Yarmouth
Maybe the Dean Martin words are not entirely appropriate!

Oh, the weather outside is frightful
The wind is so cold and spiteful
The buses have no place to go
Stop the snow, stop the snow, stop the snow

Man, it doesn't show signs of stopping
I must get out for some shopping
The gas pressure's way down low
Stop the snow, stop the snow, stop the snow

Snowdrifts the thoroughfares blocking
The cold is decidedly shocking
The traffic will no longer flow
Stop the snow, stop the snow, stop the snow

At 0930 yesterday, things were beginning to improve in Sheffield, but far more slowly than they did in fbb's youth. This picture (from 1937 and thus before the existence of fbb!) shows a bus at a snow covered Ringinglow, a village up on the moors to the west of the city's "built-up" area.
The current crisis has meant that Ringinglow has not seen a bus (T M Travel service 4) ...
... for several days!

Meanwhile, in East Devon, things started deteriorating mid morning on Thursday. The fbbs stayed cosily in the centrally heater luxury of fbb mansions watching the relentless fall of the hexagonal flaky stuff.
Seaton is in the Amber Warning area to the right of the "w" in snow.

The best illustration comes from your blogger's outdoor model railway as follows.
1000 - a light dusting; snow falling
12 noon - crisis at Peterville Station - snow falling
Bus stranded in Peterville Church Square
Peterville signalbox cut off
At approx 1300 (Thursday) Stagecoach suspended all bus services throughout the Exeter area.

1600 - total obliteration : snow still falling.
Peterville is seen above as the setting for a remake of "The Day After Tomorrow".
Snow stopped falling mid evening and minimal traffic continued to crawl past fbb mansions; this was the view from an upper floor at 2200 (Thursday).

1030 Friday : a frozen crust over everything but slight (very slight) signs of a thaw. Stagecoach were operating restricted services in Plymouth and North Devon but no reports about Exeter - presumed still suspended.

1330 Friday : Stagecoach beginning to operate in Exeter and between Exeter and Dawlish.

1630 Friday : Last buses on selected routes will run at 1900. No other routes restarted since 1330

Buses for Sheffield - a P.S.
fbb published an extract from the Sheffield Bus Partnership "Promise", together with a less than supportive addendum.
Sadly, he failed to include the equivalent passage from the new "Buses for Sheffield" team.
Timely information? HA!

There Is Another Way
An anonymous correspondent from north of Hadrian's Wall sends fbb an extract from Edinburgh's bus web site. It referred to timetable and fares changes from last Sunday, February 25th. It was particularly revealing as it listed the vast amount of work the company has done to publicise the changes starting A MONTH AGO!
The Beast from the East has been affecting Edinburgh and rather than filling their web site with stuff that is totally irrelevant (journey planners, maps and timetables of buses that are not running), just one page appears when you have a prod.
Lothian to operate a Sunday service.

Buses will begin to depart our garages into service from 1000hrs onwards. The full Sunday service should be operational by 1200hrs subject to individual route restrictions based on assessment of conditions. Our operational and engineering teams are working incredibly hard across all garages to prepare buses for departure, so please bear with us while we endeavour to get services back up and running.

Subject to weather conditions not worsening, we also plan to operate a Sunday service tomorrow, Saturday 3rd March. There will be no night buses on service this weekend at all.

A decision on Monday's (5th March) service levels will be posted by 1200hrs on Sunday on our website and social channels.

Edinburgh Bus Tours will not operate today. East Coast Buses services are currently suspended and there will be a further update on these services later today.

The pages listing the publicity for the changes are no longer accessible!

Fortunately our anonymous Scot attached a copy of the text (but without illustrations) to his email which fbb copies here.
As a certain puppet is wont to say ...
... "That's the way to do it!"

If they re-appear, fbb will re-publish plus pictures on the next available blog. Suffice it to say, it is VERY DIFFERENT from Travel South Yorkshire, First Bus and Stagecoach.

Maybe that is why Lothian Transport is a successful AND PROFITABLE company run by the Council for its residents.

And a huge vote of thanks to South Yorkshire PTE for keeping us fully informed about bus services ...
... in SKEGNESS!(?)

Tomorrow : another "popular" bus company dies.

And finally ...

When a cat's gotta go ...
Jacko, the fbb's cat, does not approve of snow. Attempts to persuade him to "go" outside proved fruitless with a sudden rush away from the back door each time it was opened. You can't really blame him - it was awful weather on Thursday.

In the end, nature became unstoppable, but at least he had the sense and domestic consideration to "go" in the downstairs toilet!
With apologies to those possessed by an acute excremental sensitivity!

Seaton Update 0800 Saturday 3rd March
It is raining! An overnight thaw had cleared the roads and most of the footpaths. The fbbs will be venturing out soon on a victualing expedition and Jacko now has unfettered access to all that he needs, although he is currently peering through his cat flap with "polite suspicion".
Peterville is slowly recovering!
And the local buses?
Who knows?

 Next farewell blog : Sunday 4th March 

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