The Best Laid Schemes O' Mice and Men ...
fbb has just obtained a transcript from a First Kernow senior management meeting held on Monday 10th May at the appropriately named preferred meeting place at Treswithian, just off the A30 at Camborne,
The chuffs meeting at the Choughs Inn ...
Dai Rector, the boss
N Gineer, in charge of the vehicle fleet
Mark Etting, in charge of publicity
Gavin Webb-Seit, the key technology man
DAI I think we can all agree that the programme of summer tourist bus services that we have put together will wipe the floor with Transport for Cornwall and make us loadsamoney.
Cheers, Banging in the tables. Self congratulation.
DAI So this meeting is the opportunity for any final snagging before the big launch on 16th.
MARK And another launch on 29th, boss.
DAI You've done a remarkable job in sourcing 30 open toppers, N. They will all be ready?
N Erm, not quite. The lads haven't finished the Lizard open topper yet ...
... and there are quite a few vinyls to stick on. But it all should be ready for the bank holiday weekend. Possibly.
DAI Oh well, if the press gets hold of the delay we can always blame Covid. But apart from the Lizard bus, everything is going well for the big interchange at the Eden Project.
MARK (Hesitantly). Oh yes, that 1030 coming together will be spectacular in the extreme. N (Positively) A blaze of colour!DAI How many buses have we got in that stunning yellow and purple livery?
MARK Definitely one, boss - possibly two.
DAI Web site OK, Gav?
GAVIN (Hesitantly) There are a few tweaks but lots of lovely pictures, and links to all the tours and their timetables.Including the Exeter Tour which starts on 29th.
DAI All ready to update in a couple of weeks?
GAVIN Yes, boss ... (sotto voce) if I remember!
DAI And on-line booking? All straightforward?
DAI What about the S1, S2 and S3 at Newquay
GAVIN Sorry boss, I've never heard of them. I'll look into it when I can work out where Newquay is.
DAI And the new timetable book, Mark? MARK A stupendous production from Ray Stenning as usual. It'll wipe the floor with the opposition and their collection of leaflets.OMNES Boring, boring boring.
GAVIN Do we need a timetable book; after all, all together ...
OMNES (Raucously) IT'S ALL ON LINE!
DAI The book's a stunner. All ready to distribute, Mark
MARK Pretty much, boss. There might be a slight delay at the printers.
OMNES (Raucously) BLAME IT ON COVID
MARK But we will probably be changing some of the times so it will be out of date soon!
Laughter all round!
DAI So we can look forward to loads of passengers from day one?
MARK Passengers? Don't push your luck boss - they make keeping to time hellish difficult.
N Passengers? Engineers don't like them. Make the buses dirty and wear them out.
GAVIN Passengers? What are they?
DAI If passenger numbers are a bit sparse for a few months we can always ...
OMNES (Raucously) BLAME IT ON COVID
DAI And (chortle chortle) the Government's paying anyway
OMNES Cheers, Applause
DAI But you've all done very well! The scrumpy's on me!Stamping on floor, Banging tables, Quaffing cider, Back slapping, Meeting papers flung uo to ceiling!
... Gang Aft Agley!
This, from a correspondent who, unlike fbb, has actually visited Cornwall recently.
There’s no printed material available for the various Adventures By Bus initiatives- much, I’m sure to Ray’s despair after burning the midnight oil to get all the ‘artwork’ finished.
(And I have admonished Ray for missing off start/end dates and days of operation on all the imagery!)
A couple of drivers told me the problem is the printer has a backlog of work following its staff being furloughed but Marc Morgan-Huws has been quiet on the subject.
Hopefully it’ll all be out soon - would ideally be for this week being half term.
What worries me is if they change some of the times for the summer holiday period, when the buses have more availability, then the printed info will be outdated.
And The Airport, Too
There has been wonder at the decision of Hulleys of Baslow to start a two hourly service between Sheffield and Manchester at about the same time as the first set of pandemic restrictions were introduced. There were cutbacks. The short workings (X56) from Glossop to Manchester were withdrawn as were evening journeys on Fridays and Saturdays, but the two hourly schedule plodded on - not overblessed with passengers!A couple of weeks ago, the service changed again. Extra weekend evening journeys are back, but the whole two hour frequency now extends to Manchester Airport ...... with the exception of the Friday and Saturday evening trips which only run to Manchester. But along comes a further development ...... namely "in association with Thomas Cook". It is not entirely clear what deal has been done, but the above poster has a second half.fbb has no idea at this stage whether this offer is going to attract people to the X57; the "traffic light" system for holiday destinations is still restricting flights to some popular areas. But it another positive initiative for the small-ish Derbyshire operator which seems determined to really "go places". And Stagecoach, TooIn a blaze of glory, and showing off their stunningly designed and branded livery (NOT!) Stagecoach have announced a new open top route in North Devon. As with First Kernow, it is a struggle to find it on-line.
This little panel ...
The 21C Buses will be launched from Summer 2021
View timetable here
Barnstaple - Braunton - Saunton - Croyde
... leads to the complex and unfathomable timetable for the full collection of 21s ...
... mote 21Cs to Croyde Bay and 21Cs to Georgeham.
But another panel ...
... revealed by a Promos and Offers click on the home page, leads to a pretty picture ...
... which, in turn, provides a map and "promo" for an hourly 21C to Croyde Bay.
There is no evidence of a PDF leaflet!
But Stagecoach has put bus pictures on Twitter.
So that's all right then.
Other bits of "Variety" promised yesterday will now appear tomorrow.
Next Variety blog : Tuesday 1st June