Sunday 10 May 2015

Weekly News Round Up 10/5/15

Not as long a round up as usual as I'm still getting back up to full speed, but I hope to cover most things.

This week has been dominated by Anglian, and their new service changes. The 7/61 has seen the most, with Kessingland flooded with buses, and a 12 min wait at Lowestoft Yarmouth bound, which from feedback I have received is not proving popular with passengers who, let's face it, don't want to sit on a bus more than is necessary. I know that 12 mins is to minimise delays if the bridgr goes up but in the grand scale of things few services are actually delayed by the bridge, whereas everyone is going to be delayed by 12 mins now.

First have responded to the extra Anglian buses in Kessingland by slashing fares on their 99 route, and I presume all services between Pakefield and Lowestoft to a pound single. The next weeks could be intteresteing. For a fulll report see here.

Some more repainted/DDA converted ALX400's have returned to both Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth. 30889/900 are back at Lowestoft, although 30900 needs an MOT, and Yarmouth has seen the return of 30258/63. I saw 32058 in Lowestoft on Thursday operating a local 111 Town Service, but by the evening it had returned to Great Yarmouth. I am grateful to Cameron Robinson for sending me a pic of 32058 last night, and as a nice touch he had persuaded the driver to put a route and destination it will probably never operate!

Newly painted 32058 showing 66 Ipswich Rail Station!   pic (c) Cameron Robinson
Speaking of Ipswich deckers I'm pleased to report that B7tl 32491 has returned to service after having a new engine fitted. Ipswich were truly unlucky having three B7tl's all needing new engines for three different reasons. 32490/1 are back on the road, but 32486 still faces a few more weeks on the aidelines due to financial constraints - engine budgets don't account for bad luck!

Also in Ipswich Volvo B12 Paragon 20514 has been repainted in royal blue and is back at Ipswich awaiting gold vinyls. Its twin 20515 is remaining at Norwich and as far as I know is not destined for the paint shop, although I'm happy to be corrected on that one.

At Ipswich Buses Dart 98 has returned from H&D Trim having had DDA conversion work carried out. The new Managing Director has also been announced, with Jeremy Cooper taking over from Malcolm Robson. I have arranged a meeting with both of them later this week, so look out for the first interview with the new man at the helm at Cnstantine Rd.

Now a vehicle that has caused rather a stir. Yesterday Roy at East Norfolk Bus Blog pubished a post on a National Express branded Scania  Levante with the novel registration NX06 AAA. It transpires that the coach beloings to South Gloucester Coaches. Here is the rather good pic that Roy took in Lowestoft, which he has given me permission to use. You can read Roy's full report here.

Scania Levante NX06 AAA at Lowestoft. pic (c) East Norfolk Bus Blog
Roy was not the only person to spot thsi coach yesterday - elswhere it was described as a "very rare visitor to Norwich". Not strictly true. As Roy suggests in his report this vehicle is on loan to Ambassador in Yarmouth as replacement for their Levante which smashed into Anglian gas bus 104 on the Acle Straght a few weeks ago, writing the latter off. I first saw NX06 AAA in Norwich on 30th April, and took this pic as I was intrigued by the registration. How long the coach is here for I don't know, but I would think she'll be a very common visitor to Norwich over the coming days.

Seen at Norwich on 30th April, Scania Levante NX06 AAA
Plans for the week include finally getting pics of the new Anglian and Konect services, and the aforementioned meeting with Malcolm Robson and Jeremy Cooper at Ipswich Buses. Then next Saturday I'm going away for a week, but hopefully getting enough material to last a month! Saturday will see me travel down to London by train then bus it down to Kent, which will involve Borismasters among others. Next Sunday I am attending a Running Day in Kent, which I'm looking forward to. The following day will see me in Brighton sampling Streetdecks, Croydon trying out  E400 MMC's in service (gluton for punishment me) and then catching the overnight Megabus to Edinburgh, changing coaches to Inverness and making my way across the Highlands to Stornoway in the Outer Hebrides. As a taster for the comparison between local authority sponsored services here and there I have discovered there s a 2145 bus that drops me outside my guest house. Can't wait, and there should be plenty of good posts coming.


  1. I'd just like to say, I didn't persuade the driver, I got screen time. I was doing a load of different destinations for the best of 15 minutes.

    1. Ok you persuaded the driver to give you screen time :D

  2. Ha ha ha, yeah, sounds okay ;)

  3. "Roy was not the only person to spot (NX06 AAA) yesterday - elswhere it was described as a "very rare visitor to Norwich". Not strictly true."

    Hmmm, to be perfectly fair, before the smash on the Acle Straight it WAS a rare visitor - I know I for one had only seen it the once before this month. I suppose it's just a matter of perspective, 'previously rare' would cover all bases though since we're sharing.

    In other news, glad to see the round up back - it's been missed.

    With regards to the Kessingland saga; while IME the Bascule (bridge) is up and down a lot more than you might think, ultimately I do agree. If they wanted to add time to the overall timetable why not spread it out (5-6 minutes here, 5-6 minutes there) rather than having a big lump in Lowestoft? Is it just me?

    As for First's fare cut, I'd suspect it's only on the 99. The only other First services through Pakefield are the 103 and the X2, and while the latter is covered fully by the YarLow ticket (effectively an offer of it's own) I have a friend who lives on the route of the former and hasn't mentioned it, so... *shrug* I don't know. Either way, there's no mention of it on their Twitters, Facebook or website, so it can't be too wide ranging.