Sunday, 24 July 2011

Lost Routes: The 22

Leyland Titans were associated with route 22 from its inception in 1936 to 1988. Here 506 departs from the Lytham Station layover point on 2 July 1983 shortly after the route was extended to Lytham
The 22 was one of two services that replaced the Layton and Central Drive tram routes. It started at Layton Square and ran via Talbot Road, Promenade, Central Drive then left onto Waterloo Road to Marton Tram Depot. Sister route 23 turned right onto Waterloo Road to South Pier. First day was 20 October 1936 and new streamlined centre entrance Titans were allocated. Short workings from Central Station to Waterloo Hotel showed 24 and Talbot Square to Layton ran as 25.

Atlanteans appeared in 1977 - here 305 crosses Watson Road on 11 May 1985. The bridge has been removed for replacement before Yeadon Way opened
The route was progressively extended. In June 1938 it continued via Whitegate Drive back to Layton as a circular with the 22A used for the reverse. In September 1939 the circular was replaced by a revised 22 which carried on at Waterloo Hotel via St. Annes Road to Halfway House. It ran every 8 minutes and this became the southern terminus until 1983.
In 1985 PD3 507 was painted red and white to mark 100 years of Blackpool Trams (Kelso Avenue 13 August 1985)
Extensions then turned to the north end. 3 November 1946 saw the route extended via Grange Road to Victoria Hospital and from July 1949 the new 8ft wide centre entrance PD2s entered service on the 22. The eight minute frequency remained - making a 4 minute headway when combined with the 23.
 The 22 ran via Valeway Avenue between North Drive and Fleetwood Road. 507 approaches the latter on a Lytham working. 
 1956 saw the northern sections of the 22 and 23 swapped, with route 22 running from Layton via Westcliffe Drive and Bispham Road to Bispham Clinic. The 23 now served the Hospital - though throughout its life the 22 still served the Hospital on early Sunday mornings. Northbound buses no longer served the Bus Station picking up at North Station, or later on Topping Street.

An ariel view of PD3 538 on Albert Road on the one way system (26 7 84)
20 October 1959 saw a further extension to Cleveleys replacing routes 9A and 9B. Alternate buses went via Devonshire Road as 22 or All Hallow Road as 22A.

322 at the Northbound Town Centre stop on Topping Street (4 Feb 1986)
Winter 20 October 1959 extended to run Halfway House to Cleveleys via Devonshire Road. Variant 22A via All Hallows Road introduced. The winter service ran every 10 minutes and 10 buses were needed. The summer service remained every 8 minutes with 13 buses. By 1967/8 the summer service was now every 10 mins (12 eves/Suns) while in winter a 12 minute daytime and 20 mins evening/Sunday service operated.

1974 saw the diversion of buses via New Bonny Street instead of Hounds Hill. Here in June 1980 325 turns onto the Promenade
By 1977 a 15 minute daytime service ran with 7 buses, reducing to half hourly (4 buses) evenings and Sundays. PD3s continued to dominate but were joined by Atlanteans. Evening and Sunday workings later used OPO buses, crews continuing on weekday daytimes. 1982 saw the 22A re-routed via Victoria Road West instead of Anchorsholme Lane East. 
The extension to Lytham in 1983 saw PD3s return to use in the town - and introduced them to South Park. 538 turns onto Ballam Road to approach its terminus after a 72 minute run from Cleveleys.
27 June 1983 saw the first extension since 1959. Alternate daytime journeys (out as 22, back as 22A) were extended via St. Annes, Ansdell and South Park to Lytham Square using an extra two buses and replacing the joint Blackpool/Fylde 11 service. Although jointly licensed, Blackpool provided all workings. Monday to Friday morning peak journeys continued to Lytham Saltcotes Road.
507 pulls away from St. Annes with a northbound 22A to Cleveleys on 11 May 1987
Deregulation saw little change, other than some journeys diverting via Lindale Gardens during 1987. Fylde introduced competing services as follows:
  • June - November 1987 St. Annes Square - Lytham Square 30 mins - replaced by route 8
  • July-November 1987 - morning peak Bispham-Blackpool every 6 mins (minibus)
  • January 1988-November 1988 St. Annes Square-Cleveleys 30 mins (Sundays later added)
  • November 1988-April 1989 Halfway House-Cleveleys 15 mins (30 Sundays) minibus operated
  • April 1989-October 1989 St. Annes Square-Cleveleys 30 mins 
Blackpool's response was to increase the 22/22A to every 10 minutes between Cleveleys and Halfway House but still with the half hourly Lytham section. One bus per hour still served Lindale Gardens. 12 buses were required. Evening/Sunday buses were unchanged and still interworked with route 9.
April 5 1988 Daytimes increased to 10 minutes between Cleveleys and Halfway House with a 30 minute extension to Lytham Square, alternate journeys running as 22 or 22A, 12 Crew DD. (1 per hour via Lindale Gardens through to Lytham). Peak journeys to Saltcotes Road discontinued. E/Su unchanged (still interworked with 9). August saw the 22A diverted via Ashfield Road (for College) instead of All Hallows Road. Evening and Sunday buses were no longer linked to the 9 and continued to St. Annes every half hour.

Olympian 378 at Bank Hey Street in June 1998 after the service had been converted to OPO
 April 1989 saw the evening/Sunday buses cut back to Halfway House and they now interworked with route 25. October 1989 saw two journeys per hour from Halfway House extended to Squires Gate Airport while in 1990 single deckers (usually Optare Deltas) took over the Sunday workings. The PD3s were withdrawn in 1988 and Atlanteans continue.

30 March 1992 saw the frequency reduce to every 15 mins (alternately to the Airport or Lytham Square). The major network revision of 14 November 1994 saw the Airport workings extend to St. Annes and the Lytham workings extend to Saltcotes Road. The service was converted to One Person Operation and 10 Optare Deltas were allocated. Evening/Sunday buses ran from Cleveleys to St. Annes. This proved to be optimistic in both capacity and running time terms and within a week the four bus workings on the 22A (the St. Annes workings) were converted to double deck operation. During December an 11th bus was added with 6 Single Deckers and 5 Double Deckers interworking at Cleveleys. At tea time several buses ran off the 22/22A at St. Annes Square onto the 14/A (St. Annes to Fleetwood) replacing crew buses.

Saturday 28 April 2011 - the last day of the 22 in Lytham sees 353 loading for Cleveleys
On 6 February 1995 the six Deltas were replaced by the new Volvo Olympians which had run on route 6 following their introduction in November. January 1996 saw the 22A diverted via Kincraig Avenue in Bispham and the route continued in this format until its final day on 29 April 2011 when it was replaced by parts of Lines 3, 7 and 11 on the Metro network.