Saturday 23 September 2017

Fragmentary Weekend Blog (1)

Ta Ta Tramstop (For a While)
Seaton's rather fine tram terminus, with its design in keeping with the "Victorian" nature of the trams, has gone - for ever consigned to some landfill site.
Just an excavator and a pile of rubble was left between Tesco and The Underfleet. Even the track has been ripped up.
This is in preparation for a shiny new terminal not at all in keeping with the age of the tram!
It will be several feet above the previous floor level to protect the station from floods and the trams will load and unload under cover. Our Victorian tram-travelling forefathers would be gob-smacked with such luxury!

Originally announced as happening "at the end of September" the destruction came all of a sudden starting on 18th. The on-line timetable clearly shows the "blue" service as operating until 30th inst ...
... (right hand blue column) and the orange service continuing thereafter cross-hatched in grey indicating a bus link. The map shows the line between tramstop (lower left) and depot (upper right).
Road access (normally strictly private) to the deport is at the end of Riverside Way ...
... hence the need for some means of getting there. There are no parking facilities.
A Sewards coach shuttles from the former terminus to the depot ...
... where a tour of the parked trams is offered by way of compensation for the disruption.

But there appears to be a problem. All tramway staff have decamped from the former station to the depot, so apart from the "We are open" notices etc ...
... there are no staff to help potential customers. The coach drivers were welcoming hesitant enquirers to the coach but, as one Sewards driver explained ...
... "When the coach is away on its shuttle run, there is nobody to help or encourage people. They will just walk away."

Generally the coach runs have carried few passengers as observed from the front door of fbb mansions.

Memo to Seaton Tramway. Have a hut and a man/woman/person in it to encourage your potential customers.

Ta Ta Time Travel
Great Western Railway were quick to correct their email which had previously invited booking before the end of September for journeys made before 9th September.
Revised emails came 48 hours later.

Bus, What Bus?
Sheffield correspondent Roy assiduously follows public transport developments in the City. He was mystified by the picture accompanying this headline.
An invisible Bright Bus? Actually, of your look very carefully you can just spot the "invisible" bus on the left. Here it is on the same photo but uncropped by an over-enthusiastic layout editor.
More on Sheffield's school buses tomorrow. The white blobs in both pictures are the Travel South Yorkshire stop, frame and flag on Granville Road.

Non-Bus Niceties :Family Business
fbb always enjoys a touch of quirk, and excitedly snapped this van parked outside the extensive food preparation area of fbb mansions.
There was a branch of Ashe and Nephew (wine merchants) at Nether Green ...
... not far from fbb's Sheffield pad; and your observant blogger has seen "... and Daughters" somewhere but cannot remember who, or where. But "and Grandson" must be very rare.

Non-Bus Niceties : Saving the Planet - Not!
And another nail in the coffin of the war on waste.
Mrs fbb has recently bought a kite, not for herself, bus as a gift for a child. The packet (left) measures about 18 inches by 4 inches by half an inch thick. It came in a box as illustrated which was big enough to hold 24 kites - nuff said.

Blue Or Orange?
the new Stagecoach Yorkshire leaflets are predominantly orange ...
... a style which hithertofore has used mainly blue. But this bus from the Wirrall Peninsula has dropped the white and much of the orange.
Was the man in the paintshop feeling a little "blue"?

In Memoriam
fbb's readers will join him in a moment of sadness to mark the death of Harry Blundred ...
... an ebullient pioneer in the bus industry. As well as being the minibus king ...
... he also installed TV screens at every stand at Exeter Bus Station (red suspended boxes, below) - and they worked!
Harold Davies Blundred died, aged 75, in Barbados on 23rd August. He was one of the bus industry's great innovators, prepared to take a risk. In the case of his minibus revolution, it did not really work; but his general philosophy has motivated many developments in today's industry.

And both Stagecoach and Arriva are now trying the minibus idea again; Arriva in Macclesfield ...
... and Stagecoach in Ashford.
Neither scheme is a roaring success but it is early days. It would be a fitting memorial to Harry Blundred if they were successful in the long term.

More "stuff" tomorrow.

 Next fragmentary blog : Sunday 24th Septmber 


  1. The blue bus is the Stagecoach Merseyside paint loan scheme.

  2. "Plus daughters" is a specialist N Gauge model railway retailer in Essex.

  3. We have an "And daughters" funeral directors here in Cardiff. And I know another one in west London.

  4. The rear of Emsworth & District vehicles carry the legend "P.R.J. & M.J.Lea, Daughters, Grandson & Granddaughters".