Wednesday, 1 January 2020

Slowly via Spital

From 26th January, Stagecoach is changing its services that run from Chesterfield via Killamatsh to Sheffield. For those using the present service 72 ...
... there will still be an hourly service but it is numbered 80. Timings from Killamarsh to Sheffield  are changed from xx14 past the hour to xx20 past the hour but instead of running into the almost deserted Sheffield Interchange it now runs to Sheffield's new-ish indoor market at Moorfoot.
On the way to Moorfoot the new 80 will stop on Commercial Street and Arundel Gate ...
... so not too disadvantageous for anyone seeking at connection at the Interchange.

But it is between Chesterfield and Killamarsh that the timetable planners scythe has been used in a significantly destructive manner.

Presently, there is a bus every 30 minutes ...
... a 72 via Spinkhill and a 70 via Eckington, thus approaching the village from different directions.

From the end of January, service 70 ceases to exist and Chesterfield to Killamarsh becomes hourly - service 80 stands alone.
But there is worse to come. Take a look at the running time from, say, Chesterfield to Renishaw on the current 70 or 72 - just 32 minutes. Now the same journey on service 80.

A whopping 48 minutes. OUCH.

Surely such a negative change will deter passengers from even contemplating the journey? Then at the next change the service will need to be further pruned?

So what is going on. Take a look at a chunk of the current Stagecoach network map for Chesterfield.
The 70 and 72 (LIGHT BLUE) currently run direct along the A619 to Brimington and Staveley with 74 and 77 as their companions. But examine the current service 80 (BROWN) and you will quickly see the cause of the extended running time.

fbb's knowledge of Chesterfield Corporation's route history is parlous in the extreme, but at one time there was a "Hady Circular" route 56.
Stagecoach now runs out and back to Brimington via the delights of Spital, Hady ...
... and Brimington Common.
Maybe folk from these salubrious communities will rush to take advantage of their new through service to Sheffield?
The current half hourly timetable (hourly in the evenings) ...
... does not change from the end of the month, but one journey each hour continues to Killamarsh and Sheffield.
Incidentally, the index headline for route 80 c/o Stagecoach Chesterfield shows ...
... although fbfb can find no journeys that emanate from Holymoorside. Surely this header should mention "Chesterfield"?

So, to save money, Stagecoach has "saved" approximately two buses by withdrawing route 70 completely and a third bus that no longer runs on the 72 between Brimington and Chesterfield.

If fbb were a glutton for journalistic punctiliousness, he would explain in tedious detail what service 80a, which runs evenings and Sundays, does that is different from the 80. Think of it a slightly modified 80 to Killamarsh then the former service 71 into Sheffield via the "traditional" route. So on this map ...
... for 72, read 80 and for 71/71a, read 80a.

Lest our sympathetic readers should be weeping copiously about the loss of an hourly service between Renishaw, Eckington and Killamarsh, there are other services covering the various bits, but not as frequently and not as conveniently for anyone wanting to make the through journey.

Chesterfield to Eckington via Whittington is covered by the half hourly 50/50a which also runs to Sheffield and has recently achieved gilded status; although the Gold-ness seems rather half-hearted.
The Killamarsh area has been "unsettled" for some time and this particular change looks less than helpful for the passenger.

But there is not much more to cut!

Three Cheers Boos For Technology
On Monday an occasional correspondent from Sheffield (Matthew) was in Swallownest Village and observed the electronic displays. In the Sheffield area Monday was Saturday, so the sign was displaying Saturday times or should have been.
The X54 to Harthill should leave at 1331 and the 29a to Harthill runs on Sundays only - which it wasn't.

Isn't technology wonderful? Hey ho, get out the sheets of crushed wood pulp with PRINTING on them.

fbb proffers calendric felicitations to all his readers!

 Mixed bag blog : Thursday 2nd January 

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