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Monday, 23 February 2015

Service 35 Commences

Today saw the commencement of a few changes to First services in Norwich, chief of which was the splitting of the 36 into two parts. The Norwich to Long Stratton section is now operated by a new service 35, and I sampled the route today.

There are three buses on the route and shortly after I arrived at  St Stephen's St  the most recent repaint pulled up in the shape of ex Yarmouth B7tl 32203

32203 at St Stephen's St on the new 35
A very pleasant 30 min ride later - yes a pleasant ride on a President - and we were in a rather chilly Long Stratton

32203 at Long Stratton
The second vehicle on the route was Trident 33152, still in old Purple Line branding. I assume that when the repaint programme restarts in April this will be one of the first to be done.
33152 heading back to Norwich
Now it's fair to say that councils get a lot of stick, most of it wholly justified. However credit where credit is due and it was good to see that up to date timetables were on display on the first day of the new operating. We'll done NCC. CORRECTION: I have been contacted by Chris Limbach, Network Officier at FEC to tell me that the timetable display is the work of First, in particular Phil Harvey, and not NCC. Happy to correct, Chris and thanks for getting in touch. What I haven't been able to discover, though, is if through fares are still available for the 35/36 or if a stealth fares rise for those crossing the City has been implemented.
The new 35 timetable
My bus back to Norwich was another repaint, this time  Trident 33163. More rattly than 32203 but still  an ok ride. I like the 35 - it gives the buses a chance to spread their wings, and will be a good route for the Summer combining with the other routes serving Long Stratton, Simonds 1/2 from Diss, and Anglian's 83 to Harlesdon.

33163 in Long Stratton

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