Tuesday 30 July 2013

Talbot Road Views

The remodelling of the Town Centre has transformed some established scenes. Here Classic Bus B10M 898 turns from Dickson Road onto Talbot Road, a once common manoeuvre prior to the late 1970s when Dickson Road became one way

One of Stagecoach's new Scanias for the 61 crosses Dickson Road to head along Talbot Road  
Blackpool Trident 308 follows suit

DAF 365 at the junction with Cookson Street, this junction for many years had continental running traffic using the right had carriageways in each direction, rather than the normal left!

Solos depart

276 is the final of the second trio of Solos sold to Halton to leave, departing Blackpool on 26 July, preceded by 274 on 24th and 273 earlier in the month. 267 and 268 are the sole survivors of the original 15 Solos in Blackpool, both stored awaiting disposal, 268 at least partly cannibalised.

Meanwhile Excel 219 has now gone for DDA conversion following 216 and 220.

Monday 22 July 2013

Going Both Ways

Saturday 20th July saw the implementation of a new road layout in Blackpool Town Centre. The redevelopment of the area next to the Bus Station as Talbot Gateway has already seen a redesign of the inner ring road with New Larkhill Street created between the Railway Station and Grosvenor Street, while Buchanan Street was upgraded to replace the old Larkhill Street. This is involves two way operation, while from 20th July, Dickson Road, Springfield Road, Talbot Road and Cookson Street became two-way after around four decades of one way operation.

As a result bus routes have been changed:
2/2C to Poulton; 11 to Grange Park and 20 to Marton Mere now operate along Talbot Road past the old Bus Station, right into Cookson St, left into George Street and right onto Grosvenor Street to Caunce Street or Church St. Buses back into Town run as before via Church St, Topping Street, Deansgate, Cookson Street and Talbot Road. The 16 from North Station joins the same route from North Station at Cookson Street.

Buses on the 3 and 4 from Cleveleys to Mereside approach Town via Dickson Road and turn right onto Talbot Road to reach Clifton Street, then follow the route of service 2/2C as above.

The 5, 7, 9 and 14 can now use Talbot Road in both directions without the need for the former one way systems, ending the use of the bus stop on Topping Street.

Friday 19 July 2013

Repaints and Disposals

Excel 220 has now been repainted into the standard fleet livery with 305 currently in the paint shop. 

Solos 273, 274, 276 have been sold to Halton Transport while 275 left to Partons on 15 July 2013.

Delta trainer 970 is being replaced by a second hand low floor DAF with East Lancs body, W471MKU which was new to Yorkshire Terrier but latterly ran for Stagecoach Sheffield. This is the first bus to be purchased as a dedicated driver trainer. W471 has been purchased from Partons in part exchange for the Delta.

Wednesday 17 July 2013

Round Up

Stagecoach has recently introduced a batch of new Alexander Dennis Enviro bodied Scania double deckers to the interworked 61 (Blackpool to Preston) and 59 (Preston to Blackburn). 9 have been allocated to Preston depot and several have received route branding.

BTS has introduced a new timetable on service 14 from Monday, while CBNW will extend their Seafront 12 to St. Annes from 22 July.

BTS Solo 273 has left Blackpool and is understood to have rejoined sisters 269/71/2 at Halton Transport.

Buses have reappeared in St John's Square which has been reopened due to congestion associated with Town Centre regeneration work at Talbot Guideway. Here is nearly new (well to Blackpool anyway) Trident 368 on the 20.
Newly outshopped in green and cream, training Delta 969 poses on the tram depot fan

The Resort Hopper Solos are getting around with examples noted on the 5 and 16 recently as bigger buses have seen use on the 20 to cope with heavy loads at busy times. The four all-over advert Tridents are now occasionally seen away from their regular haunt on route 1; three out of four managing to work on the 2/2C on the same day recently.

Fleetwood scenes

Cumfybus is a regular sight in Fleetwood, though its batch of hybrid Solos are much less common. Here YJ12GXG heads past the church on Lord Street heading towards Blackpool on the 74.

With the backdrop of a gutted fish curers, BTS Trident 316 heads for Mereside on route 14 
Sister 325 heads for Fleetwood Ferry at Fisherman's Walk. 325 is one of three of the former Line 11 Tridents to retain roller blinds.

On the Prom

The MCV bodied Volvo B7RLE has unusually seen service on route 20

The Blackpool Council Metrorider, 1064 (ex BTS 512) is in regular use in its new role as a mess van for the tramway track gang. It is seen here parked at the tramway side at Bispham

Classic Bus Olympian 915 frames BTS Volvo 522 operating on service 1
The demonstrator once again (JM)

CBNW's colourful open top Metrobus heads south past the Tower tram stop

Saturday 6 July 2013

Delayed DAF Debuts; Demonstrator Drops By; DDA Developments [updated]

DAFs 368-370 made their service debut on Monday 8th June. 368 appeared on the road (but not in service) on 5th June, over six months after it arrived from Bus and Coach World.  369 is registered J600BTS, as J500BTS is privately owned on a Land Rover! It is presumed 370-2 are J700/800/900BTS respectively.

With DAF refurbishments complete, Bus and Coach World have been contracted to modify the Optare Excels to meet Disability Discrimination Act requirements as applied to buses. Other than the Olympians, these are the only Blackpool Transport Buses which do not meet the regulations. All new buses since 2001 have been so specified by law; the ex Manx buses have been modified and the Excels need to be to ensure continued operation after 2015. 

MCV bodied Volvo single deck Demonstrator BF12KWT is currently paying a visit. This spent six months on trial with National Express West Midlands during 2012 and has latterly been with Whitelaws Coaches in Lanarkshire. It is understood to have operated on route 20 yesterday.

DAF Trainer 969 has been repainted during June, emerging in an unusual hybrid match of past liveries. It retains the Metro style but in traditional green and cream shades! 

Manx DAF Status

NoRegIOM NoIOM RegChassis NoBody NoArrivedService
355 L100BTS95FMN622J0092663830917/7/125/9/12
356L200BTS 93FMN621J 0092613830427/7/125/9/12
357L300BTS 94FMN620J0092643830727/7/125/9/12
358L400BTS 96FMN623J0092623830530/7/126/9/12
359L500BTS 98FMN836J0092653830831/7/124/10/12
360L600BTS 89FMN299J0092593830230/7/123/10/12