Sunday 25 August 2013

Red or Black?

Classic Bus North West Routemaster RM1568 awaits departure time from the Sands Venue stop on Seafront 12 to St. Annes. 1568 ran with London Transport from 1963 ending up with MTL London Northern on privatisation. Withdrawn in 1997 it passed into non psv use but was bought back by Transport for London for refurbishment by Marshall of Cambridge. From 2001-2005 it ran with Soverign Bus and after withdrawal spent a brief period in Oxford before passing via a non psv firm to Classic Bus in 2008

At the same location, Blackpool Transport Excel 221 loads for Lytham on route 11. 221 was one of three Excels purchased from Go North East in 2004
Bank Hey Street and Classic Bus Dart 162, branded for "Catch 22" loads for Meresied
Blackpool Transport 309 also heads to Mereside on route 14
CBNW 269 passes Blackpool's first boarding house - which opened as "Crewe's Original Boarding House" in 1886, starting a trend by providing meals for guests - previously overnight guests at hotels were expected to source their own food.

A generation newer in design, but just two years newer in build, Blackpool Excel 215 heads onto the Promenade on New Bonny Street.

Sunday 18 August 2013

St. Annes Scenes

The view from the top of Classic Bus North West  701 showing the traditional ECW 3+1 front seating and the characteristic Sand Dunes of St. Annes
Classic Bus 701 (XAU701Y) is their latest bus, purchased privately from Blackpool Tranpsort in 2012 after withdrawal on 28 October 2010 it was intended for preservation but has been drafted into the CBNW fleet instead. An all-over advert for the Hot Ice Show is graced by a NBC Poppy Red/white front in a nod to its Trent origins, rather than the usual London Red CBNW fleet colours.
A new Aldi store is under construction on the site of the former Conservative Club. Here Trident 339 heads to Lytham on route 7 past the building works. 
Excel 225 enters St. Annes from Blackpool - the boundary being at the junction behind - Squires Gate Lane. The site of Pontins is to the right - the vantage point being one of the vast number of seats atop CBNW Metrobus 69

Meanwhile back in St. Annes Trident 349 passes the former Blackpool, St. Annes and Lytham Tramway waiting shelter. This has since served as a Tourist Information Centre and now a Cafe. The original shelter is the right of the two buildings - that on the left is a 1980's addition. 

Blackpool Transport's newest buses are the 9 2010 built Plaxton bodied Volvo B7RLEs. Here 531 turns from St. Annes Square heading for Grange Park on the 11

Pontin's Then and Now

For the nimble, the sand dunes on Clifton Drive North have provided a grandstand view of the Pontin's Holiday Camp - or generally the buses passing in front. The camp closed in October 2009 and has been partially demolished with the remainder now derelict. Here Classic Bus Metrobus 69 heads towards Cleveleys on Seafront 12.

Blackpool Transport DAF 359 passes the stripped remains of the camp chalets on route 11

New to Reading Excel demonstrates the cosmopolitan make up of the Blackpool fleet with second hand vehicles from seven sources.

Trident 318 is one of three Tridents still to receive its first repaint, retaining its original Metro livery from 2003.
Happier Times, in August 1987 Routemaster 525 heads past on route 12 with the displays showing the former scale of the Pontin's empire. 525 is now back in London with Tower Transit who recently took over the First London operations.

Saturday 10 August 2013

Final DAF Debuts

Trident 371 in Talbot Square operating to Grange Park on route 11

The final pair of ex Isle of Man DAFs, 371 (J800BTS) and 372 (J900BTS) have now entered service with 371 debuting on 8 August and 372 the following day. All 30 ex Bus Vannin double deckers are now in service - a process which lasted 588 days from the debut of Trident 343 on 30 December 2011.

The 30 buses have replaced 36 others with 21 Olympians and 15 Solos so far withdrawn.

Manx Trident Arrivals
NoRegIOM NoIOM RegChassis NoBody NoArrivedStatus

Manx DAF Arrivals
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