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Bus-Related Outings & Reviews
RE: Bus-Related Outings & Reviews
Yesterday, Friday October 27th, a little trip of Manchester & Eccles as follows:-

192 Piccadilly Gardens - Stagecoach E400H 12208
130 East Didsbury - Arriva Saphire Gemini 4491
24 Media City - Stagecoach Enviro400 19340
Metrolink Victoria via Cornbrook & Exchange Square routing - Trams 3061 & 3104
10 Eccles - Arriva Pulsar 3134
293 Eccles via Trafford Park - Rotala Diamond Solo 20829
Metrolink East Didsbury via Cornbrook - Trams 3078 & 3080
23 Bank Hall Road - Stagecoach Enviro400-MMC 10624

I timed it to do route 24 to Media City and route 293 in the afternoon by daylight. The Gemini on route 130 was a bonus!
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RE: Bus-Related Outings & Reviews
Last Saturday, January 27th, I did Northwich & Wrexham. All buses & trains were Arriva, as follows:-

Train Heaton Chapel - Crewe : class 323

37 Winsford : VDL-Plaxton Centro 2616
29 Northwich : Sapphire Gemini 4490
2 Northwich via Northwich Stn : Sprinter 4702
82 Chester : Sapphire Enviro 400 4645
1a Chester via Blacon : refurbished Pulsar 3143
1 Wrexham : Sapphire Enviro 400 City 1005
8 Wrexham via Caia Park : refurbished Solo 661

Trains Wrexham General - Chester - Heaton Chapel : class 150/2 & 150/1
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RE: Bus-Related Outings & Reviews
So today, Saturday February 24th, I did Manchester & Stretford. Short walks in the heart of Manchester city centre are not highlighted. My itinerary was as follows:-

Walk to Stockport

199 Manchester Airport - High Peak Scania-Solar 690 (one with Centrebus livery and blue-based seats)
Metrolink Victoria - Tram 3114
Walk to Shudehill
156 North Manchester General Hospital - Stagecoach Enviro400-MMC 10853
42 Manchester - First Volvo B9TL 37395
15 Stretford - Stagecoach Enviro400 19364
276 Chorlton - M Travel Dart-Pointer 31 (originally Travel London DP114)
85 Manchester - Stagecoach Enviro400-MMC 10411
278 Stretford - Diamond Solo SR 20871 (apparently ex-Connexions)
263 Manchester - Arriva Sapphire Enviro300 2746
TP Stockport - High Peak Enviro200 527
364 Heaton Road via Warwick Road - Stotts Enviro200 MX10DXD

Then walk home. I walked at the start to ensure no delay before my target bus. I walked home at the end to live out a one-off illusion that the standard operator in Stockport is not Stagecoach after all!
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RE: Bus-Related Outings & Reviews
I managed to catch Diamond's loan SK17HHL. I was much more impressed this time with the ride as my previous was very jerky on the brakes and the gas. It was still jerky but nowhere near as my first ride. It was also nice to see what it could do with a few miles on the clock.

It's negative was build quality (a light clip fell out with a second missing) from what the driver claimed was a new bus. On-board passengers didn't really speak of the livery but more of the build quality.

New pics

With Network Warrington (journey)
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Road Trip
Hi all,
Been a while since anyone has shared their trips on here.

I've just got home from a a couple of dsys away and would like to share my log.
If you're on the Facebobook "Trains And Buses of Lancashire (and etc)" page you'll know me but if you're not here goes....

Thurs 28th
Left our house at 0623 to get the first 46 from Blowick into Lord St, Southport on Arriva 3042 onthe 46 route.

Then the first X2 to Preston at 0647 from the old Rlbble bus station, (free with my staff pass) which was Stagecoach MCSL 15295.

At Preston I boarded Stagecoach North Lancs and Cumbria 15818 on the 40 to Lancaster.

After which I rode a route that I've wanted to ride the full length, from start to finish, since I was a kid, the most scenic route in the country the 555 from Lancaster to Keswick- my chariot on this leg was Lakes branded 10554 again those northern Ribble lot.

A really tight connection in Keswick meant I sampled Stagecoach Gold for the first time because my plans on this stretch went pear shaped!(more later)

But instead of getting a 554 to Carlisle I had to re-evaluate my itinery so Gold Scania 15224 came to my rescue and whisked me to Penrith for just after 1300 hrs. (All this on a Stagecoach £11.30 Explorer ticket plus)

Cheated for a leg or 2 from Penrith and got Pendolino 390 010 to Carlisle, then a brief break and picked up Scotrail 156 442 to Dumfries so I could ride the other route I wanted to.

This was a little hot and cold because the X74 at 1545 from Dumfries to Glasgow (after much waiting) ended up leaving 25 mins late, but we're talking Scotland here where laid back is an Aussies wound up, so relaxed to us!

Anyway Stagecoach, always out to impress, provided a Volvo B whatever(think B13R)/ Plaxton Elite i, to whisk me to Glasgow, 54258.

Got to Buchanan St 15 late but didn't matter after such a smooth 100 odd miles in just on 2 hours.

Determined not to let me down (yep right....but it sounds good on a blog) I resorted to the X24 to my final port of call some 13 hours later with one of my favourite coaches- a Volvo B11R/Plaxton Elite, Stagecoach Western 54332.(B13Rs are slighly better, Parks of Hamilton bought them by the bucket load for STG/Citylink work)

Dunfirmline reached at about 1940 after 13 odd hours on the, sleep in the Wetherspoons there ,The Guildhall and Linen Exchange, which is also a hotel! What a bonus!!

Already booked a room for a bargain £39 for a night before the aforementioned chaos.

DEEP BREATHE team..cocked up cos was gonna get the 554 from Keswick to Carlisle and then the 79 to Dumfries but had to get a train or 2 as I've noted previously so didn't complete the trip 100% bus but wasn't far off.

SAT 29/9
Woke up 0620 sh*t,shower, shave, shampoo in that awesome 'spoons hotel ready to nip downstairs for a damn good brekkie with extra haggis (only £6.49 I'll have you know).

Then the highlight for me of the trip was 54514 , one of those brand spanking new, out of the box Plaxton Leopards, unique to Stagecoach Fife at present. A low floor front with standard coach rear. Belting design which would be ideal on the X2 or 47.

Met a couple of train driver mates in Edinburgh on the premise of visiting Lothian's Central garage open day.(Well that was our excuseWink )

The following ensued on route 7:-
Leyland National 2 104
Ex- London (rebuilt by Wrights) 1005, 1012
Atlantean 801
Olympian 332
RCL2241 (one those Lothian have just rebuilt)
Trident 542 (now preserved as part of the Lothian Motorcoaches fleet- I know wouldn't have thought so myself)

Anyway after a race we got the 1652 from Waverley back to Preston (390 117 By the way).

Darren left us at Lancaster
Myself and Mark- Preston then I got Stagecoach 15304 on the X2 back home to Southport.

Have you caught your breath after that??? Still catching mine!!

But the trip was well worth it. Spirit of being an enthusiast and that's what keeps me going after over 23 years in the job.

I get very frustrated the way Merseyside is basically a polished turd, transport wise, when north of the border, primarily on the Central Belt, is how transport should be sold and delivered.

Look at that new Stagecoach X5 from Widnes to town with those 11-12 year old Volvos they've transferred down from Scotland- mark my words 2020's order will include coaches of 54514's spec. Search "54514" on flickr and you'll see what I mean. Market for them on both X2s (Chester and Preston ones) as well.

At least I've shared my last 2 days with you. Hope you have enjoyed this blog!
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RE: Bus-Related Outings & Reviews
That is good that - I did once consider doing Edinburgh on my staff pass (I worked out from mine you could do it one way only in a day mine and it would require a very very early start) but good on you actually doing it!

Maybe one day I'll give it a shot!


Light up, light up as if you have a choice,
Even if you cannot hear my voice.
I'll be right beside you dear.
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RE: Bus-Related Outings & Reviews
Thanks boss!
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RE: Bus-Related Outings & Reviews
So, yesterday I did Huyton & Wigan. All trains were Northern Rail. I walked to and from Heaton Chapel, and the rest of my day proceeded as follows:

192 Manchester Piccadilly Gardens - Stagecoach 12205
Walk to Manchester Victoria
Train Wigan North Western - 319 380
Train Huyton - 319 372
10b Queen's Drive - Arriva 4655
10a Prescot - Stagecoach 11108
10 St Helens - Arriva 4442
352 Wigan - Arriva 2692
635 Appley Bridge - Diamond 40414
635 Wigan - Diamond 40630
5 Wigan via Beech Hill - Stagecoach 36797
Train Manchester Victoria - 319 380
Metrolink Manchester Piccadilly - 3057
Train Heaton Chapel - 323 230
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RE: Bus-Related Outings & Reviews
Last Saturday, January 26th, was Manchester via Trafford Centre, as follows:

25 Trafford Centre - Stagecoach 36782
X5 Sale - MCT mini Enviro200 YY67HBL
245 Trafford Centre - Arriva 2592
X50 Manchester - Stagecoach 10612
X43 Prestwich - Transdev Witchway 2779
94 North Manchester General Hospital - M Travel MPD BU05HFC
151 Newton Heath - Stotts Solo YJ57EJX
83 Manchester - First 67418
27 Salford - Diamond 30140
37 Manchester - First 33677
192 Heaton Chapel - Stagecoach 12185
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