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Greater Manchester Service Changes
RE: Greater Manchester Service Changes
(Yesterday 09:43)dounowhoiam Wrote:  It's not so much the extension into Wythenshawe Interchange / Hospital, though if Jobcentre travel is the main target then it should be travelling to the Interchange on Saturday as well as it's open on that day.

Everyone (regardless of whether they are unemployed or not) has a designated DWP day based on their NI number.

If the two digits before the final letter are
0-19 your day is Monday
20-39 your day is Tuesday
40-59 your day is Wednesday
60-79 your day is Thursday
80-99 your day is Friday

That becomes your sign-on day for any period you are unemployed and claiming benefits while you're working age and is now also the day your state pension payment will be sent after you retire.

No-one is allocated a Saturday sign-on day. A quick Google shows some job centres started to open on Saturday in 2019 and that relates to providing services to those who are working, most notably older workers looking to retrain for a new career.

Quote:If full paying passengers (like myself) are the main goal having a Saturday service from within GM (such as the Airport) allows regular GM commuters (bus / tram / train) to travel to Cheshire purchasing the D&G day tickets.

Like I mentioned in another thread when discussing airport services airport patronage is at very low levels not seen since the 1960s. For those catching only buses (and not flying) there's alternative interchanges, many of which are more suitably located.

From the Cheshire end a Wilmslow to Manchester Airport plus bus ticket gets you to the airport quicker than the bus and then allow use of almost any bus within Greater Manchester.

Quote:The experience with the Hulleys service is that it shouldn't be considered a direct competitor with 130 as it will likely be a limited stop (similar to how the X57 is between Glossop and Manchester Airport). Areas like Handforth and Alderley Edge don't get served by other normal bus services where I have seen the patronage board and alight in both directions.

It doesn't matter whether it's a duplicate route or not, the important question will be are there any essential journeys which can be made using the 130 but won't be possible on the X1 or other public transport options. It also doesn't matter whether people board and alight in Alderley Edge or not, what matters is why they are making those journeys - if it's to get medical treatment at Macclesfield Hospital or to travel to Sainsbury's in Wilmslow then they are would be classed as essential journeys, if it's for a ride on a bus/something to do then the council doesn't have to subside them. If they are essential weekday off-peak journeys the council could include them as part of the Flexirider system instead of a fixed route bus service.

Quote:The 42C is an hourly service, whereas the Airport gives multiple transport methods that link different areas of Greater Manchester with facilities to support those travelling on public transport. D&G do run a service that links Handforth Dean with Wilmslow and Knutsford four days a week.

You're missing the point. The 42C is a TfGM contracted service, which is part replacement for the old 130, while even before the Wythenshawe extension of the new 130 there was no attempt to ensure the remaining part of the 130 connected with the 42C. Alderley Edge to Cheadle requires 2 changes using the 'Free Bus' option you suggested and even then the 'Free Bus' is only a very limited service that doesn't necessarily connect with the the 130 or 42C.

The Knutsford extension on the Free Bus is because the bus was running out-of-service to get to and from Wilmslow for the service. I doubt many people in Knutsford want to catch a bus which takes an hour to travel a relatively short distance and then would leave them at Handforth Dean for 3.5 hours. If it was better publicised it might be a few people would have used it to get to the pharmacy led COVID vaccinations at Handforth Dean.
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RE: Greater Manchester Service Changes
(Yesterday 11:33)knutstransport Wrote:  Everyone (regardless of whether they are unemployed or not) has a designated DWP day based on their NI number.

If the two digits before the final letter are
0-19 your day is Monday
20-39 your day is Tuesday
40-59 your day is Wednesday
60-79 your day is Thursday
80-99 your day is Friday

That becomes your sign-on day for any period you are unemployed and claiming benefits while you're working age and is now also the day your state pension payment will be sent after you retire.

No-one is allocated a Saturday sign-on day. A quick Google shows some job centres started to open on Saturday in 2019 and that relates to providing services to those who are working, most notably older workers looking to retrain for a new career.

Thanks for letting me know that information, I was looking at the Wythenshawe Job Centre opening hours which showed that it is open on Saturdays which is why I raise it.

Quote:Like I mentioned in another thread when discussing airport services airport patronage is at very low levels not seen since the 1960s. For those catching only buses (and not flying) there's alternative interchanges, many of which are more suitably located.

The Airport is a very suitable location for interchanging and very effective thanks to the Relief Road. There are bus / tram / train links direct to Stockport, Altrincham, Manchester, Trafford Centre, etc that may be a lot more practical than interchanging some out of town shopping centre.

Quote:From the Cheshire end a Wilmslow to Manchester Airport plus bus ticket gets you to the airport quicker than the bus and then allow use of almost any bus within Greater Manchester.

Looking at the PlusBus website, the Airport isn't one of the Interchange stations supported and is not accepted at as many bus operators as the System One network. If you look at it from the perspective of passengers, if they are taking a train from Wilmslow they will more likely go directly into Manchester in the same way that paying Macclesfield passengers commute to Stockport or Manchester.

Quote:It doesn't matter whether it's a duplicate route or not, the important question will be are there any essential journeys which can be made using the 130 but won't be possible on the X1 or other public transport options. It also doesn't matter whether people board and alight in Alderley Edge or not, what matters is why they are making those journeys - if it's to get medical treatment at Macclesfield Hospital or to travel to Sainsbury's in Wilmslow then they are would be classed as essential journeys, if it's for a ride on a bus/something to do then the council doesn't have to subside them. If they are essential weekday off-peak journeys the council could include them as part of the Flexirider system instead of a fixed route bus service.

As Job Centre travel (previously been brought up) has been one of the targets for the 130, that would constitute as an essential journey. Is the range provided by this Flexilink service able to cater for this (in terms of area it covers, time it runs and capacity of five passengers) to replace a bus service that is used.

Quote:You're missing the point. The 42C is a TfGM contracted service, which is part replacement for the old 130, while even before the Wythenshawe extension of the new 130 there was no attempt to ensure the remaining part of the 130 connected with the 42C. Alderley Edge to Cheadle requires 2 changes using the 'Free Bus' option you suggested and even then the 'Free Bus' is only a very limited service that doesn't necessarily connect with the the 130 or 42C.

The Knutsford extension on the Free Bus is because the bus was running out-of-service to get to and from Wilmslow for the service. I doubt many people in Knutsford want to catch a bus which takes an hour to travel a relatively short distance and then would leave them at Handforth Dean for 3.5 hours. If it was better publicised it might be a few people would have used it to get to the pharmacy led COVID vaccinations at Handforth Dean.

The Free Bus was brought up as a slight route change to the 130 could make the Free Bus redundant (thus freeing extra resources).

Check out my "Working in Progress" bus timetable / map website:
https://sites.google.com/site/dansmancpublictransit/
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RE: Greater Manchester Service Changes
(02/08/2021 22:45)dounowhoiam Wrote:  From my personal experience of the 130, it has picked up the patronage to hold itself well between the Handforth - Macclesfield section.
With many frequent buses (such as the 11, 101 and 43) running between Wythenshawe Hospital, Interchange and the Airport (and a direct hourly 18 service) if any changes are made to save costs it should be cut to just the Airport and Macclesfield with the savings transferred to a Saturday service being introduced.
Weekend travel on public transport is increasing more than commuter travel (and sadly the 130 in GM hasn't been timed well for commuter use), which does open up travel not just for concessionary travel but also paying customers like myself.
I would say cut the airport and have Wythenshawe as the more important link. While yes the Airport can carry workers, Wythenshawe can offer much better onward connections as well as it having the shopping links for regular users. The Airport, with the exception of workers, does not attract very regular passengers.
The main issue with what you have said about cutting back the 130 (wherever it terminates) is that it will still use the same amount of buses so there isn't really any saving unless D&G work driver breaks into it. Other than that, there isn't really any savings since the resource is still being used.


(Yesterday 08:19)knutstransport Wrote:  Not sure what you mean about Saturday service being introduced, do you mean the existing Macclesfield-Handforth service being extended to Wythenshawe on Saturdays too? I would have thought there would be less demand for Wythenshawe on Saturdays - fewer hospital appointments and the job centre being closed.

The imminent question is whether the 130 will change so that it doesn't compete with the new X1 between Macclesfield and Manchester via the airport, given that councils can't legally use taxpayers money to subside a bus service with competes with a commercial one. With various town and parish councils providing money towards the service it might be changing the route would upset one town or parish council, who could then withdraw their share of funding, which then puts the whole route up for review. If I was a local councillor for Handforth then I would certainly not see Handforth as an acceptable place to terminate Cheshire bus services such as the 130 and to not have them making connections to Greater Manchester services such as the 42C.

If the 130 remains as it is then the question next year will a new contract be awarded and what form does it take.
There would be less demand to Wythenshawe on Saturdays but there is leisure demand. People work through the week, shop in the weekend.


I think your obsession with the X1 and 130 competing maybe needs relaxing. They aren't meant to be competing routes and there are examples out there where the stopping bus is subsidised with a commercial express bus and there was going to be quite a high profile one in Merseyside when Merseytravel put the Runcorn to Liverpool X1 out to tender. Yes they cant compete but if Hulleys are so infrequent for it to be deemed a core route, they can continue to subsidise the 130. More so if Hulleys are limited stop. The Airport could become controversial but I question the actual demand anyway, in which case run via Heald Green into Wythenshawe.


(Yesterday 09:43)dounowhoiam Wrote:  It's not so much the extension into Wythenshawe Interchange / Hospital, though if Jobcentre travel is the main target then it should be travelling to the Interchange on Saturday as well as it's open on that day. It could save a little bit of time going directly via Oatlands Road as well.
I don't think the job centre is a main target though it should be since for people from Wilmslow or Handforth, it's quicker to get to Wythenshawe than it is Macc. It would be even quicker if the bus didnt trek around the airport.
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RE: Greater Manchester Service Changes
(Yesterday 12:17)dounowhoiam Wrote:  Looking at the PlusBus website, the Airport isn't one of the Interchange stations supported and is not accepted at as many bus operators as the System One network.

That's a strange one if true as it's a Greater Manchester Plusbus scheme and the airport station is just inside the GM boundary. I do know you can't buy a GM Plusbus ticket if both your origin and destination station are within GM so if you tried to search for Manchester to Altrincham Plus Bus it would come up that no fares are available.

Quote:As Job Centre travel (previously been brought up) has been one of the targets for the 130, that would constitute as an essential journey. Is the range provided by this Flexilink service able to cater for this (in terms of area it covers, time it runs and capacity of five passengers) to replace a bus service that is used.

Are 5 seats a special COVID reduced capacity? If so that might not still be in force.

It really depends who is uncatered for through other services. If it's for the purpose of taking everyone from Handforth, Colshaw Farm and Wilmslow to a job centre then possibly not, as for one the advisors can't book everyone from those areas in for appointments at similar times but if it's because only Nether Alderley is unserved then possibly.

Quote:The Free Bus was brought up as a slight route change to the 130 could make the Free Bus redundant (thus freeing extra resources).

The Free Bus is funded by Tesco and M&S. It'll only be dropped if Tesco and M&S decide it's not worth funding for the number of extra customers it brings in.
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RE: Greater Manchester Service Changes
(Yesterday 12:51)iMarkeh Wrote:  I think your obsession with the X1 and 130 competing maybe needs relaxing. They aren't meant to be competing routes and there are examples out there where the stopping bus is subsidised with a commercial express bus and there was going to be quite a high profile one in Merseyside when Merseytravel put the Runcorn to Liverpool X1 out to tender.

As already discussed PTEs interpret the same rules differently, possibly due to higher total usage. It's possible in the case in PTE areas that if an operator loses out on one route by a different interpretation then they might also gain on another route. In Cheshire that's less likely to happen.

I've checked on the details for what happened when GHA registered an hourly commercial 45 Northwich to Warrington via Lostock Gralam. Cheshire West withdrew funding for both the 45 and 46 and Network Warrington continued to initially run them both on a commercial basis before switching to running only a 46 on a commercial basis, before giving notice of their intention to cancel the commercial service when GHA collapsed.

Now the 46 serves villages which the 45 does not cater for. It's possible had Network Warrington not been willing to keep the 46 going on a commercial basis that Cheshire West would have done something to cater for those villages, possibly an extension of the 4 Northwich-Barnton service? However, it seems they deemed Northwich to Warrington via Barnton & Anderton as competing with Northwich to Warrington via Lostock and Wincham.

The 289 that also run from Wincham to Northwich was unaffected but that was operated by GHA at the time, so we don't know if the 289 would have been affected if it hadn't been operated by GHA and GHA had kicked up a fuss.

If two different Northwich to Warrington routes can be deemed as competing then why can't an express and an all stops Wilmslow to Macclesfield? (Presuming Hulleys do serve Wilmslow.)

Quote:The Airport could become controversial but I question the actual demand anyway, in which case run via Heald Green into Wythenshawe.

And there's the problem. As I mentioned half the subsidy for the 130 is coming from town and parish councils, if Macclesfield Town Council think we offered to help subside it on the basis that it would run to the airport so if it doesn't we'll pull our funding, then that's 1/16th of the funding gone.

Quote:I don't think the job centre is a main target though it should be since for people from Wilmslow or Handforth, it's quicker to get to Wythenshawe than it is Macc. It would be even quicker if the bus didnt trek around the airport.

You might be aware that in 2018 Wilmslow Job Centre closed and Macclesfield Job Centre moved to a new building to allow for it to provide the services which were previously provided by Wilmslow.

You might not be aware that in the past you got may have been asked which Job Centre you would prefer to attend as part of a benefit application. However, under the new system anyone in the former Macclesfield borough (whether it be Handforth, Wilmslow, Chelford, Macclesfield, Knutsford, Mobberley, Plumley, High Legh or anywhere else) is automatically assigned to Macclesfield Job Centre. If you don't want to attend the allocated Job Centre you had two options:
1. Phone DWP as soon as you get the initial appointment invitation for your allocated Job Centre (which could be for an appointment the same day as you receive it), turn down that appointment citing difficulties in reaching that job centre and request that you are given an appointment at your preferred job centre.
2. After you are signing on, walk in to the Job Centre you'd like to attend and ask to have your claim transferred to that job centre, the same as what you'd do if you relocate while claiming benefits.

For someone without a car in certain villages they will need to do option 1 because it's not practical to get to Macclesfield.

However, in saying people in Wilmslow and Handforth can go to Wythenshawe instead it will depend on:
a) Whether they bother to transfer.
b) If they hold a railcard. If they do the railcard discounted train fare for Stockport will be a more attractive price than the bus to Wythenshawe or Macclesfield.
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RE: Greater Manchester Service Changes
(Yesterday 16:10)knutstransport Wrote:  As already discussed PTEs interpret the same rules differently, possibly due to higher total usage. It's possible in the case in PTE areas that if an operator loses out on one route by a different interpretation then they might also gain on another route. In Cheshire that's less likely to happen.

I've checked on the details for what happened when GHA registered an hourly commercial 45 Northwich to Warrington via Lostock Gralam. Cheshire West withdrew funding for both the 45 and 46 and Network Warrington continued to initially run them both on a commercial basis before switching to running only a 46 on a commercial basis, before giving notice of their intention to cancel the commercial service when GHA collapsed.

Now the 46 serves villages which the 45 does not cater for. It's possible had Network Warrington not been willing to keep the 46 going on a commercial basis that Cheshire West would have done something to cater for those villages, possibly an extension of the 4 Northwich-Barnton service? However, it seems they deemed Northwich to Warrington via Barnton & Anderton as competing with Northwich to Warrington via Lostock and Wincham.

The 289 that also run from Wincham to Northwich was unaffected but that was operated by GHA at the time, so we don't know if the 289 would have been affected if it hadn't been operated by GHA and GHA had kicked up a fuss.

If two different Northwich to Warrington routes can be deemed as competing then why can't an express and an all stops Wilmslow to Macclesfield? (Presuming Hulleys do serve Wilmslow.)


And there's the problem. As I mentioned half the subsidy for the 130 is coming from town and parish councils, if Macclesfield Town Council think we offered to help subside it on the basis that it would run to the airport so if it doesn't we'll pull our funding, then that's 1/16th of the funding gone.


You might be aware that in 2018 Wilmslow Job Centre closed and Macclesfield Job Centre moved to a new building to allow for it to provide the services which were previously provided by Wilmslow.

You might not be aware that in the past you got may have been asked which Job Centre you would prefer to attend as part of a benefit application. However, under the new system anyone in the former Macclesfield borough (whether it be Handforth, Wilmslow, Chelford, Macclesfield, Knutsford, Mobberley, Plumley, High Legh or anywhere else) is automatically assigned to Macclesfield Job Centre. If you don't want to attend the allocated Job Centre you had two options:
1. Phone DWP as soon as you get the initial appointment invitation for your allocated Job Centre (which could be for an appointment the same day as you receive it), turn down that appointment citing difficulties in reaching that job centre and request that you are given an appointment at your preferred job centre.
2. After you are signing on, walk in to the Job Centre you'd like to attend and ask to have your claim transferred to that job centre, the same as what you'd do if you relocate while claiming benefits.

For someone without a car in certain villages they will need to do option 1 because it's not practical to get to Macclesfield.

However, in saying people in Wilmslow and Handforth can go to Wythenshawe instead it will depend on:
a) Whether they bother to transfer.
b) If they hold a railcard. If they do the railcard discounted train fare for Stockport will be a more attractive price than the bus to Wythenshawe or Macclesfield.

As part of the registration process Cheshire East would have all the relevant information and have the facility to comment in advance on the proposed service (assuming they understand it). It would be surprising if there hasn't been communication between the parties, bearing in mind the possible effects on contracted services that are considered to be paralleling it.
Common sense would suggest that this is a complimentary service that may well increase bus usage in a car dominated area, but common sense has always been sadly lacking when it comes the CEC and public transport provision.
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RE: Greater Manchester Service Changes
(Today 08:18)KXW212 Wrote:  As part of the registration process Cheshire East would have all the relevant information and have the facility to comment in advance on the proposed service (assuming they understand it).

While Derbyshire CC have mentioned the X1 is starting in September on their website and TfGM have mentioned in the meeting notes for the latest transport meeting, Cheshire East seem to have done neither.

Even ignoring whether it competes with another service, it will need allocating a stand at Macclesfield Bus Station and which stands are available will depend on the arrival and departure times.
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RE: Greater Manchester Service Changes
(Today 08:33)knutstransport Wrote:  While Derbyshire CC have mentioned the X1 is starting in September on their website and TfGM have mentioned in the meeting notes for the latest transport meeting, Cheshire East seem to have done neither.

Even ignoring whether it competes with another service, it will need allocating a stand at Macclesfield Bus Station and which stands are available will depend on the arrival and departure times.

I can’t see that being an issue unless there’s waiting time planned in. Macc bus station doesn’t exactly have the most intensively used stands.
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RE: Greater Manchester Service Changes
(Today 09:35)djb Wrote:  I can’t see that being an issue unless there’s waiting time planned in. Macc bus station doesn’t exactly have the most intensively used stands.

There might well have to be. Ashbourne to Macc is only just under 30 miles, so that would be the obvious place to split the registration to avoid restrictive EU, and stay with domestic drivers hours.
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