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Monday, 29 September 2014

Ipswich Today Part One

A bumper double post today on all things Ipswich, with apologies to Ipswich Buses fans as they seem to have missed out on this one.

My day started in Saxmundham waiting for my usual bus into Ipswich, which in the past hasn't been known for getting the top quality vehicles. However, today was to prove the exception as B7tl 32488 turned up, and it seems I have to thank the good little girls and boys of Kesgrave High School for overcrowding a singke decker which means I may get a decker on that run a bit more often. Now those of you with 24 hour memories will recall that 32488 was the vehicle involved in a close encounter with a building last week in Ipswich. Well as you can see she is alive and well and every time I get on one of this batch of B7's I remind myself they are only one year younger than the heaps of Presidents at Yarmouth and Norwich. Such a contrast.

32488 AU53 HKF unscathed after last week's incident
My mission today was to get pics of the latest arrivals from Rotherham and I wasn't disappointed as pretty soon 66957, fresh from wowing the crowds at Showbus came in on the Stowmarket run. Luckily for me she changed routes later and I caught her to Woodbridge, and she still smells of new leather!

Ex Norwich Volvo B7rle 66957 departs OCM for Stowmarket
Soon after the latest decker to return from Rotherham, 32486 rolled in on the 66. I thought I'd compare the before and after, as I think this vehicle provides the most vivid contrast.

32488 before Rotherham got their hands on her looking rather shabby it must be said
Doesn't seem possible it is the same vehicle! 32486 looking much better and note the rear WiFi ad
I then went round the depot to see what was going on, and it was a hive of activity. I got my usual cheery and friendly welcome which was a real morale boost and centre stage was E200 44516, which was a result as I still hadn't got a decent pic of her. I was advised to come back later as she was going to be the first to have "Free WiFi" vinyls applied, so go back a couple of hours later I did and here you are - the first pics of the new vinyls.

Freshly applied to the side of 44516 ready for the big switch on coming soon
A full side view.
I can now give a full update on the comings and goings at Ipswich. Currently away at Rotherham for refurb are Volvo B7tl's 32492/3, and Volvo B7rle's 66985 and 69010/422/5. Depending what comes back tomorrow another decker or P&R B7rle will go up there this week. There is no news on transfers, so no idea when 69006 will arrive, and at the moment 69431-3 are still at Ipswich, indeed 69433 is parked around the back looking rather sorry for herself. I will update as and when I hear anything I get clearance to publish. As usual my thanks to Barry and the boys at Ipswich for making me feel so welcome.

OK that will do for Part One - coming up  in Part Two first pics of 66986, and a couple of very rare workings.

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