Sunday, 25 July 2021

Sunday Variety



Today's service is live and ON-LINE.
 Click on this link (here),
which will take you to the YouTube page.
Then click on the icon for today's date.

Sorry fbb forgot the above link last week!

 Back With A Tow Bar?

Way back in 2019, Stagecoach in Chesterfield started a "tour bus" service, ambling around the Hope Valley and Derwent reservoir area. Numbered H1 and H2, it ran every day during the peak school summer holiday period.
It had some good printed publicity including leaflets ...
... and posters at major tourist infromation points.

After being laid low with the virus in 2020, the service returns from today, but in a much reduced form. For this season it will operate until the end of October half term, but at weekends only.
The timetable is much the same, an hourly two bus service but only following the H1 route; with journeys at the beginning and end of each day through from Chesterfield. It is the trundle via Edale that no longer runs.
The on-line graphics are the same as for 2019 ...
... but there is no downloadable leaflet. fbb does not know whether printed material is available.

But, for this season, the buses will tow a trailer for bikes, TWO bikes!

Fares are held at 2019 prices but, in a welcome clarification and/or extension of validity the various day rover tickets are now ALL valid.

Ticket prices - frozen at 2019 prices
All tickets are valid all day on the Hope Valley Explorer. Day, single and child tickets for this service are only available to buy on the bus, not on our website or app.
Adult day ticket £6 - Not valid on any other service
Family day ticket (up to 2 adults and 2 children) £12 - Not valid on any other service
Child day ticket £4 which includes travel all day on the Hope Valley Explorer.   Not valid on any other service
Single journey £4 - Not valid on any other service

ENCTS (that is "seniors" ir understandable money
half single fare or £3 day ticket when presented with a valid concessionary pass - Not valid on any other service

NEW FOR 2021!
More tickets available for this service - 
Gold DayRider, Child Gold DayRider, GoldMegaRider, Derbyshire Wayfarer, GM Wayfarer  

It's a good and picturesque ride and, of course, is the only bus to ascend and descend the glorious Winnats Pass.
Buses 257, 272 and X57 offer connections from Sheffield as to trains calling at Hope or Bamford. Trains, of course, also run to/from Manchester.


Staycation Express
Also back this year are special charter-type trains from between Skipton, Appleby and - new for 2021 -  Carlisle.

Thus year you get an HST!
It looks very much like and ex GWR train still in its GWR green but with a broad grey stripe of sticky tape added, It also has a crest ...
... which translates "omnia (all things) sunt (are) possibilia (possible). Enim means "thus" or "therefore" and contributes nothing to the sense of ther latin tag except making it longer and thus more respectable.

The seats are posh as well.
The company is Rail Charter Services.
Booking is all on-line which makes something as simple as finding how much it costs causes a bit frustration. 

You have to attempt to book a specific journey and then the fares come up. But here are samples:-
If you were a real Settler and Carlisle junkie combined with a lover of the luxury of a first class seat in a lovely High Speed Train, you could start from Appleby and do the lot!

0940 Appleby to Skipton
1118 Skipton to Carlisle
1509 Carlisle to Skipton
1718 Skipton to Appleby
According to Roger French, who has already had a ride, you can also book brunch (£15) and afternoon tea (£18) with proper cutlery and real cups and saucers.
And if Rog thinks it's good - IT IS GOOD!
And, talking of Settle ...
... very neat!

And Now Fort Something Completely Different

And Stagecoach - Again!
Here is a lovely Stagecoach bus.
And the same bus branded for service 55 to Calne.
Very attractive - creating desire?
A Stagecoach manager has proudlty twittered a picture of the same bus just out of paint shop.
Is it an improvememnt?

Talking Of Lights?
fbb has bought one of these.

More in a later blog.

More stuff tomorow 

 Next Variety blog : Monday 26th July 


  1. Have to say, of the 3 liveries of that Stagecoach bus, the *second* one is a mess. To me anyway...

  2. A suspicious person may think that the Stagecoach Board were shown the second picture as the example of what the local companies were doing with the livery and how they should be stopped by the livery change people, because it is awful!

  3. The "Calne" branded 55 was part of a series, one for each significant place along the route, each featuring local people.
    A mess to some, but in reality a popular feature which really embedded the route into the communities it serves, and helped continued growth in patronage well after the initial kick-starter funding had been spent.
    Now, of course, if high management also think montage liveries of this kind are a mess perhaps they don't want to really become part of the local community, or understand their market.

  4. The "Anonymous" comment 25 July 2021 at 11:21 should be required reading for all corporate identity managers in the bus industry. I don't know how long the average bus passenger journey in the UK is, but I seem to recall that it is not much more than 5 miles. So what is the point of a corporate identity that demands that buses in Swansea are painted the same colour as those in Oxford (I'm thinking of NBC days for that particular example)?

    People in Calne almost certainly neither know nor have any interest in the livery of buses in Perth, but if the livery relates to their location, and the service provided relates to their needs, then the operator may benefit far more than from any sterile, universal corporate identity scheme.