Saturday 11 March 2023

Saturday Variety

Serendipity With Scenery!

Thanks Horace/Horatio!

In a weirf dribble of memory, fbb remembers a robot hound on TV called "Serendipity Dog". He/she/it was in a children's' science programme called "Treasure House." After less than a years run (Autumn 64 to Spring 65, the show reappeared as "Tom Tom" and the dog was dropped! One of Tom Tom's themes was Formula 1 car racing and the studio had a slot car racing circuit.

So it was that fbb discovered a small model railway whilst queuing for a table in Axminster's Community Waffle House.
As fbb perused the April edition of Railway Modelling, lo and behold, Serendipity burst forth yet again. There was an article about said small model railway.
What the article also explained - something that fbb was too engrossed in his desire to wolf down a waffle - was that the buildings on the layout were based on premises local to Axminster, the most notable being the Minster itself!

But there was Axminster station building ...
... Trinity House whereat the Waffles were waffled ...
... and even Buffers model shop just up the road.
Note the red painted moulding as fitted to the front of a class 158/159 in Stagecoach livery.
If only fbb had been kess keen to stuff his face he might have noticed the "local colour" and taken some more pictures.

Now below is a proper waffle ("gaufre' in French), deep fried and packed with calories!

What Does It All Mean?
When fbb "did" economics for A Level at Northampton Grammar School he was encouraged to read "The Business Pages" in a "good quality" daily newspaper. He never did!

But he did read the annual report from the family investment portfolio (one block of shares with the J Sears company). They were hard to understand in detail, but whatever the actual company results, the text was always positive!

So how do you read this?
UK Bus up 50%, largely because HMG was paying most of the bills; but London and overseas bus, well reduced.

What about GoAhead's rail business in the UK? During this accounting period they lost the South Eastern train franchise which was re-nationalised.
So less money coming in - another set of profits partly paid for by Government subsidies (sorry, franchise payments).
So, exceptional?

Exceptionally good or exceptionally bad!

Who knows?

When Is An Interchange Not An Interchange?
When it's at Cringleford!
The road running North is Round House Way which takes traffic up to the hospital. The A11 juncts with the A47 serving as a Norwich by pass.
The idea is that longer distance inter-urban bus services can pull in to the lavish "interchange" where passengers can alight and interchange with local buses (the Pink Line) to the Hospital. On the left is a large layby with a stone built shelter ...
... with what looks like a very standard bus stop frame with departure lists. For interchange in the opposite direction ...
... you have bus stop "C" complete with very ordinary shelter, bus stop pole-n-flag with a very small timetable frame.

Konnectbus list their departures from Stand A ...

... and away from town from Stand B.
First Bus departures from Stand C are also listed ..,
... but not by First. The above is from the BusTimes web site.

There was no evidence of a listing for the 11, 11A, 12 and 12A Pink Line which would be the main link from the "interchange" to the hospital.

However, also on-line was  non-stop Shuttle service to the Hospital ...
... operating on Saturday 13th nd Sunday 14th March - 2021!!!!

In answer to the heading above; an interchange is not an interchange when it is two bus shelters, one on a layby and one by the roadside. Then it is just bus stops!

But, as we are often told ...

It Is All On-Line!

And, even beter news ...
... in amongst all the above useful info (?) was a link to First Bus leaflet for the Pink Line.

Hornby Moves On?
And nothing to do with model railways.
Alex Hornby, "wunderkind" and boss of Transdev, has not returned to the company after his family half term. We are told this is for "personal reasons" and, using the catchphrase of Arnie, he says "I'll be back!" At least one publication seems to think Alex will not "be back" with Transdev.
Stepped aside; not stepped down?

 Next Variety blog : Sunday 12th March 

1 comment:

  1. I wondered when Alex would step down or be asked to step aside with the haemorrhaging losses. He is a build-a-brand person and I can imagine Best Impressions don't come cheap (personally not a fan of the designs they do).

    That said though, good luck in whatever he does next. His ideas are good, but in the current climate are perhaps too expensive for the industry.