Sunday 10 August 2014

Weekly News Round Up 10/8/14

This year is flashing by alarmingly fast, and it's Sunday again already so here is the weekly look at what's been going on.


The most significant news of the week in my opinion has not been reported anywhere else yet, but from 1st September the frequency of buses between Ipswich and Colchester is being doubled to make it a basic hourly frequency. That is truly excellent news and not before time. All we need now is an express bus service and Greater Angfia might actually have some competition. To accommodate the extra buses unfortunately cuts have had to be made elsewhere, and the losers are Hadleigh and Mistley. The 94, which runs from Colchester to Hadliegh is largely withdrawn except a couple of connecting services in the morning and evening peak, and the 96, which ran from Ipswich to Mistley in the gaps the 93 didn't is now renumbered 94 and will not serve Mistley anymore, although other parts of the route will continue to be served, as will parts of the existing 94 between Caple St Mary and Colchester.

The other major change is that the 92 to Holbrook will be extended to Manningtree, at long last giving an alternative to the train from Ipswich. All in all these changes I view as positive, and will certainly allow me to get to Colchester a bit more often to observe the goings on there.

Not my best pic but the only one of a 94 I have, and let's face it not a bad model either! Ollie C101 CHM when Carters were using her in service
First Group

Not a huge amount to report this week. Ex Norwich B7rle 66950 has returned with a grey front and ex Clacton E200 44518 is due back soon. The newly painted ALX400 32479 now VA479 has been the centre of attention all week, and rightly so as it looks great. Norwich Volvo B7 66333 has unexpectedly returned to Norwich and was spotted in serivice on Friday. Over at Yarmouth the Olympians have seen extensive work this week, including a late night run on the 8's last night - thanks to Jamie for the heads up on that one. ALX 32064 is off sick with gearbox probs and the old driver trainer coach has finaly been taken away for burial. New trainer 60807 has arrived back in a blaze of chevrons!

66333, seen here at Tower Ramparts, Ipswich, has now returned to Norwich
Greater Anglia

It has been another truly horrific week for rail passengers. I cannot remember the last day the network ran without problems,and I'm not just talking minor inconveniences either. On both sides of the network it has been almost incessant disruption and GA have have broken the world tweet record this week I think.The trouble is, as usual, that the huge majority of the probs have not been down to GA, Yes, the Class 90's are failing with alarming regularity but most of the probs are down to the infrastructure. The worst case this week was on Thursday when  the signals between Ipswich and Stowmarket crashed. Nothing could run between those stations for hours and Lord only knows how long it took commuters to get home that night. Friday night a fatality at Broxbourne meant choas on the other side, and yesterday, dear God right in the middle of the Summer Season they closed the line between Ipswich/Manningtree and Stowmarket no doubt hugely inconveniencing thousands of holidaymakers we NEED to come to our region. Someone actually gets paid to decide these things! I hope it is a better week on the railways this week.

Showbus 2014

On September 21st Showbus takes place at Duxford again and after looking at the entry list last night it is quite sad to see very few vehicles from this region have been entered. East Anglia Transport Museum have 3 entries but from what I can see nothing from Anglian or Konect, nothing from Norfolk Green, Sanders, Ipswich Buses or Carters, Galloway or Beestons. Coach Services of Thetford are taking their Volvo B9tl, and joy of joys 33423 has been entered, which should steal the show in my opinoin, but that's it. There have been reports that VA479 is going too but as yet it is not on the official entry list. I have noticed that one of Oxford Tubes new Van Hool Astromegas is going so that should be worth seeing too.

Now a plea for help! I would very much like to get to Showbus this year but as yet haven't got a way of getting there. It was thought someone was going to organise a bus but I don't think that's happening now so if anyone can oblige (a couple of spare seats on 33423 would be HUGELY appreciated) then please let me know. I say a couple as I would need picking up from this outpost in order to get to the bus!

So, as it's the only official entry from operators in our neck of the woods (not ignoring you Coach Services but haven't got a pic of the B9 yet) here is another blatantly contrived chance to show yet another pic of 33423. Have a good week, everyone.

Before she was pink!! 33423 enters Lowestoft Bus Station in her early days on the X1

1 comment:

  1. The old old story: the small local independents are more nimble than the large conglomerates. It was ever so. I suspect most passengers worry more about the quality and frequency of their local bus than all the network blather. And they don't have to rob Peter to pay Paul. Keep it up Carters, nonetheless! I envy Suffolk's diversity. It's given them good standards compared to Essex where, too often, it's the exception rather than the rule.