Saturday, 15 August 2009

City Sightseeing Manchester

A rather wet afternoon in Manchester sees Olympian 857 overtake Classic Bus RML2734 at Albert Square. Both former London buses

The Manchester tour is a remote part of Blackpool Transport's operation. Taken on in 2006 when the Blackpool tour became a direct operation (rather than a franchise) initially it used three Metrobuses 802 (BYX302V), 814 (BOK68V) and 892 (GYE392W). At the end of the season 802/14 were withdrawn and for 2007 newly acquired Olympian 844 (D244FYM) ran alongside 892 with 857/8 (D257/8FYM) as spare buses. For 2008 892 was replaced by 873. Buses tended to be outstationed, initially at a First Manchester depot but latterly on in a yard at Trafford Park. Maintenance work took place at Rigby Road and buses regularly returned to Blackpool for that to take place.

For 2009 the buses are based at Finglands depot who also took over the provision of drivers and their phone number now appears on the tour literature. 844, 857 and 873 are now permanently in Manchester, Finglands presumably also maintaining the buses. September 13 is the last day of operation and the service has been deregistered suggesting changes to the operation may take place from 2010.