Wednesday, 4 September 2013
Timings Built On Serving Filton 
One of the enduring mysteries of Bristol is the question "Where is The Centre?" Not, please note, "Where is the centre?"; the capital letters are important. Some maps show the city centre like this:-
But, pedantically, such a cartographical interpretation is less than correct. Although much rebuilt, firstly as a result of wartime bomb damage and later as part of the city's regeneration programme ...
... the Broad Quay area (historically developed from a now-filled-in dock) was ...
... The Tramway Centre. It was here where most of Bristol's horse trams (later electric) congregated. When wartime damage abruptly ended the tram system it was here where most of the buses congregated and the name became just "The Centre".
Even today, you will find many of First Bus's city and country routes calling at busy stops on or near Broad Quay..
In 1912, the Filton tram was numbered 6. The route had been extended from Horfield to near the Church ...
... from where Tram No 233 has its blind set for returning to the "Tramway Cenre".
It was at Filton Church that "motor charabancs" could be boarded for onward travel to Thormbury.
Later, of course, the motor bus services were extended and augmented to carry the thousands of workers to and from the various factories north of the former Filton Village.
In 1957, one such route was numbered 73, seen here in 1957 outside the well-known and popular Anchor Hotel.
Today's main First Bus route to Filton is the 75 running every 10 minutes along the busy Gloucester Road (A38) through "the village" to the Patchway roundabout.
Here the route runs via Coniston Road to its terminus at the out-of-town shopping mall delightfully named Cribbs Causeway. It's companion, route 76, leaves the main drag at Horfield and follows a shorter route via Southmead and Crow Lane to the "Mall".
But don't take fbb's word for it, check on First's current on-line plan of Bristol City routes which clearly shows the 76 ...
... NOT going to Cribbs Causeway. Whoops! Now, "new look" and keener First, what's the point of publishing route maps that are wrong; and wrong through incompetence and lack of update?
In passing, please note that the route 75 does not have a "time point" at the traditional Filton Church but quotes a stop some distance further north, almost at Patchway. Furthermore, as is so often the case, names on the map do not match the timetable except at the terminus. Very helpful and usefully informative, NOT!
And it is the complications of time points, stop names and stop locations that concerns fbb. There are, you will observe, far more bus routes than just the simply city service 75 passing through the traditional "village" of Filton.
So, tomorrow, we take a look at where the stops are and what they are called. It will be quite hard work, so settle down with your thinking head attached and, perhaps, a cup of strong black coffee to hand. You may well need it!
What exactly do they mean?
Just past fbb mansions is the vehicular entrance to Tesco and, for no obvious reason, the lads arrived yesterday to resurface the junction and dig up the pedestrian walkway.
Three-way traffic lights coped (just about) with traffic and a set of signs was provided for pedestrians. Approaching from the town centre this was the unhelpful offer:-
On yesterday morning's "constitutional" fbb, always the rebel, circumnavigated the barrier and walked on fearlessly. Just beyond the barrier were two signs facing the road.
Across the junction, for those approaching from the opposite direction, was another variation; but, this time, no barrier.
It would seem that there was no way for pedestrians to "officially" get to Tesco. Sensibly, most, like fbb, ignored the nonsense and used their common sense! Presumably we taxpayers are footing the bill for someone to plan and install these helpful notices?
Next Bus Blog : Thursday 5th September