Saturday 31 December 2016

Major Improvements for the 5, Not so much for the 450

From Tuesday 3rd January, Stagecoach services 5 and 450 are extensively revised. Currently service 5 links Grimsby with Immingham and South Killingholme every half hour Monday to Saturday daytime, with some journeys operating beyond Immingham as either service 150 to East Halton or service 450 to Barton and Brigg. At weekday peak times some journeys serve the MIC Plant at Immingham instead off South Killingholme.

Service 5

The first working day of January sees the main Grimsby to Immingham and South Killingholme service increased to operate every 20 minutes Monday to Saturday daytimes, increasing to every 15 minutes at peak times, including Saturdays. This is a welcome boost in frequency which shall hopefully make the bus a more attractive option for local travel on the Grimsby-Immingham-South Killingholme corridor.

Peak time services via the MIC Plant at Immingham remain and now also operate on Saturdays. The current 4 morning services are increased to 6 from Grimsby, with 3 afternoon journeys. Instead off operating the main service 5 route from Grimsby to Immingham County Hotel via Wybers Wood Lights, Healing, Stallingborough roundabout and Immingham Town, before extending to the MIC Plant, morning journeys now operate direct (via the A180?) from Wybers Wood Lights to the MIC Plant before extending to County Hotel and South Killingholme. Afternoon journeys continue to operate the main service 5 route, serving the MIC Plant instead of South Killingholme.

Monday to Saturday early morning starts from Humberston via Cleethorpes remain, while hourly evening and Sunday services only have minor timing changes.

The college day 5C variation serving Grimsby Institute and Franklin College is withdrawn. The morning 5C currently starts in Habrough and this facility will be provided by a normal service 5 in the future. Two evening peak services from Grimsby continue to extend to Habrough, but no longer to Ulceby; combined with changes to the 450 (see below), Ulceby no longer has any through services to Grimsby, and no suitable peak time connecting service without using Call Connect. I hope no commuters were relying on the 5/450 from Ulceby.

These changes are a bit different from what was expected though. These improvements are being supported by North East Lincolnshire Council and the Department for Transport (DfT). The bid to the DfT last Summer was for a service every 15 minutes between Grimsby and Immingham, extending half hourly to the Able UK development, Phillips 66 Oil Refinery and the Catch training facility. Next week's new timetable only delivers a 15 minute frequency at peak times, only serves Catch via the peak time MIC Plant workings, and doesn't serve Able UK or Phillips 66 Refinery at all (although Total's Lindsey Oil Refinery becomes a timing point). Maybe there has been a change of plan, or maybe there will be a phased approach to developing service 5, as the Able UK site is largely if not totally undeveloped at the moment. If it's the latter I suspect South Killingholme better not get too used to a 20 minute frequency.

Service 450

So for the vast majority of passengers, the changes are good news or no change. However when the 150 and 450 are considered it's not quite such a good news story. I've already posted about the 150 being withdrawn - thankfully the Monday to Saturday 450 hasn't suffered the same fate but it's not come out of the changes very well.

Currently four service 5's from Grimsby extend from Immingham to Barton and Brigg as service 450, and a fifth on a Saturday as far as Barton; on weekday's there is an extra Immingham to Barton service instead. These provide a roughly two hourly morning/early afternoon service westbound. In the other direction there is one morning Barton to Immingham service that then runs through to Grimsby and three or four from Brigg to Immingham that run through to Grimsby (on schooldays the final journey operates Brigg-Barton-Goxhill then Barton-Immingham-Grimsby). This also provides a two hourly morning/early afternoon service along with a single later afternoon service.

With the new timetable the through journeys between service 5 and 450 cease, and the 450 becomes a stand alone service between Immingham County Hotel, Barton and Brigg. The loss of all through services is a retrograde step, although perhaps trying to mix the improved service 5 with the 450's school requirements based timetable and infrequent journeys proved impossible. The use of Immingham County Hotel as the 450's terminus means that not only passengers for Grimsby will need to change buses, but so will anyone travelling into Immingham Town Centre.

Four Immingham-Barton-Brigg journeys remain in the morning/early afternoon. On weekdays this isn't a major change, with the final departure from Immingham to Barton just 5 minutes earlier than at present, and while overall there is one less Immingham to Barton journey, currently two services run within half an hour of each other. On Saturday's the last westbound service from Immingham to Barton is 65 minutes earlier.

Eastbound there is a significant reduction however. The morning peak Barton to Immingham service has gone - this used to exist as a balancing working from the early morning Grimsby to Barton Humber Flyer, which since last year has extended through to Hull. There is no equivalent evening return to Barrow, Thornton Curtis or Wootton so it is only Ulceby that has lost out on a usable commuting link.

From Brigg four services remain to Barton, with the first three operating 35 minutes later than at present, and the final operating 55 minutes earlier. On Saturday's and School Holiday's all four services continue onto Immingham, but on schooldays only the first two do, with the third terminating in Barton and the last terminating in Goxhill, and not returning to Barton for an final Barton-Immingham service as at present. This means the last bus from Barton to Thornton Curtis, Wootton, Ulceby, South Killingholme and Immingham on schooldays will be at 1215 rather than 1345 and 1715.. It also means there will be no connection from the afternoon 360 from Scunthorpe Colleges in Barton for Thornton Curtis, Wootton, Ulceby and South Killingholme.

The new 450 is fine for Brigg school students, and for villagers wanting to travel into Barton for a couple of hours in the morning. It's OK for trips into Brigg, though 0840 is a bit early and 1110 a bit late for arrivals into Brigg for morning shopping. However it means a change for Immingham Town Centre, and as for the connections to/from Grimsby, they have come have out horrendously. First possible arrival is 1140, latest possible departure 1305.

The 450 receives financial support from North Lincolnshire Council, and I suspect that is why the connections to Immingham Town Centre and Grimsby have come out so badly - they are in North East Lincolnshire so not North Lincolnshire's priority. Add in tight council budgets which probably prevent adding in any more 'resource' to improve the timetable, and the existence of Call Connect, and the end result seems to be a poor service 450 timetable.

Furthermore it can't help the Immingham to Barton section that Grimsby to Barton is also covered by the Humber Flyer and the train, Barrow to Barton by the 260 and Immingham to South Killingholme by the 5. It increasingly comes down to being a service for Thornton Curtis, Wootton and Ulceby, a long way from the days of the X21 or even the 250. Welcome improvements elsewhere won't have helped viability.

Monday 26 December 2016

Stagecoach 50 Amendments

From Tuesday 3rd January, Stagecoach service 50 between Saltfleet and Grimsby has some minor changes. The 0630 from Grimsby Riverhead Exchange will depart at 0625, the schooldays 1445 from Riverhead Exchange will depart at 1435 and the 1725 from Grimsby College shall operate slightly later from Riverhead Exchange onwards. Journeys from Saltfleet have extended running times, and the 1830 departure is retimed to 1840.

Stagecoach tookover this service from Amvale in September.

Sunday 25 December 2016

New late evening Hull-Barton Journeys

Some positive news to report this Christmas Day. From Tuesday 3rd January, Stagecoach are adding three extra late evening Monday to Saturday journeys to the 350 Humber Fastcat service, between Hull and Barton only. There will be new departures from Hull Paragon Interchange to Barton Interchange at 2220 and 2330, and from Barton Interchange to Hull at 2255.

Currently the last departure from Hull is at 2125, and from Barton Interchange at 2156, so these later journeys are a significant improvement to the evening service. Whilst I'm sure Hull City of Culture 2017 has played a large part in justifying these services, they will be useful for late night train connections at Hull Station, evening football matches at the KC Stadium and evenings out in general, in Hull but also for anyone attending an evening event in Barton. Hopefully they are well used - it's ambitious adding this improved evening service 6 days a week, as opposed to say just Friday and Saturday initially.

The 'even interval' hourly early to mid evening service goes a bit off pattern - 1825, 1925, 2025, 2125, 2220 then 2330 from Hull - but this is understandable as trying to do a Hull-Barton round trip in a hour would be rather challenging. The new departures from Hull also nicely fit around EYMS service 66 along Boothferry Road in Hull during the late evening; the 66 departs Paragon Interchange at 2140 and 2300, with the 350 perfectly filling an 80 minute gap at 2220 and then offering a half hour later last departure.

It's not clear whether the new evening journeys will be routed via Barton Market Place, Pasture Road and Butts Road - there is no timing point for the Market Place but from the Humber Bridge toll booths to Barton Interchange the new evening journeys are allocated 15 minutes rather than the 13 minutes allowed on existing evening journeys, which could allow for serving the Market Place - it would be illogical in my opinion not to serve the Market Place/Pasture Road/Butts Road in Barton as not doing so would make parts of Barton over half an hour walk away from the nearest bus stop served by the new evening journeys.

Clearly the new journeys will involve some out of service mileage. On the assumption that Hull depot operates the new journeys (as opposed to Scunthorpe), that will be from Barton to Hull just after midnight. Given that the 350 operates a direct and quick route into Hull it seems a shame not to run in service as far as Hull City Centre just in case someone finds the journey useful.

Traveline East Midlands shows that most existing Monday to Saturday journeys are due to be retimed slightly, but Stagecoach's new timetable doesn't show that. The timing point for Primark on Carr Lane in Hull City Centre has also disappeared with Stagecoach's new timetable. I'm not sure if the 350 is back running via Carr Lane yet, if it is due to do so again in early 2017 when 'public realm' works are entirely finished or if the service has been 'pulled' from the Hull City Centre loop entirely - I hope not as it is useful to have the option of catching the bus in the eastern half of the city centre rather than having to walk back to the Interchange, and to be able to connect from North Hull services (when I was at university getting off a 105/115 at Carr Lane and catching the 350 there frequently got me home half an hour earlier!).

Anyway, great to see the new late evening journeys!

Sunday 18 December 2016

Christmas and New Year Services 2016/2017

Here is a round-up of Christmas and New Year services across the Humber region, covering Arriva Yorkshire, BusKing, EYMS, First South Yorkshire, First York, Grayscroft Coaches, Hornsby Travel, Stagecoach and Transdev (York and Yorkshire Coastliner). Information for York Pullman service X36 is provided, but details are not known for service 36. Services provided by these operators outside of the region are not covered. If anyone has information for other operators, please post a comment and I will update this post. Please check exact details before travelling as this is only a summary.

Christmas Eve - Normal Saturday service with an early evening finish around 6-8pm.

Christmas Day - No Services

Boxing Day Monday 26th - Limited daytime services on certain routes only in the Hull Area:

34: Hull-Willerby - Hourly
56: Hull-Longhill-Asda Bilton - Hourly
64: Hull-Cottingham-Castle Hill Hospital - Hourly
66: Hull-Hessle - Hourly
115: Hull-Avenues-Cottingham-Castle Hill Hospital - Hourly (circular with 154)
154: Hull-Willerby-Castle Hill Hospital - Hourly (circular with 115)

1: Hull-Boothferry Estate - Hourly
2: Hull-Boothferry Estate - Hourly
3: Orchard Park-Hull-Greatfield- Half Hourly
4: Orchard Park-Hull-Bilton Grange - Hourly
5: Hull-Orchard Park-Kingswood - Half Hourly
8: Hull-Sutton Park-North Point - Hourly
10: Hull-North Point-North Bransholme - Hourly
11: Hull-North Point-Kingswood - Hourly
12: Hull-North Point - Hourly
13: Hull-North Point - Hourly
14: Hull-Greatfield - Hourly
Plus Football Buses to/from the KC Stadium

Bank Holiday Tuesday 27th - A Sunday service will be provided. First York will provide a half hourly frequency on service 10 to Stamford Bridge.

Wednesday 28th - A Saturday service will be provided, except BusKing and Hornsby Travel who will provide a normal Wednesday service. There are exceptions as follows:

  • EYMS Services 124, 195, 241, 360 and 361 will operate a normal Wednesday service
  • EYMS Services 106, 107, X36 and the Beverley Town Shopper Shuttle will not operate
  • EYMS Service 64 will have an extra journey from Hull to Castle Hill Hospital at 0615, returning at 0701 (New for 2016, maintains early service not provided on a Saturday)
  • EYMS Service X46 will have an extra journey from Pocklington to York at 0725 (New for 2016, this maintain a key peak time service not provided on a Saturday)
  • EYMS Service X57 will have an extra journey from Gilberdyke to Hull at 0708, with the 0855 X56 Elloughton to Goole starting in Hull at 0820 (New for 2016, this maintains a key peak time service into Hull not provided on a Saturday)
  • EYMS Friday and Saturday evening only journeys on routes 18, 75, 121 and X47 shall not operate (i.e. a normal Wednesday evening service will operate)
  • Stagecoach service 25 in North East Lincolnshire will operate a normal Wednesday service (this ensures a peak time service is provided)
  • York Pullman Service X36 will operate a normal Wednesday service
Thursday 29th - A Saturday service will be provided, except BusKing and Hornsby Travel who will provide a normal Thursday service. There are exceptions as follows:

  • EYMS Services 124, 134, 195, 360 and 361 will operate a normal Thursday service
  • EYMS service 135 will have normal Thursday departures from Driffield at 0910 and 1140, however the 0655 and 1710 journeys will not operate
  • EYMS Services 106, 107, 143, 160, X36 and the Beverley Town Shopper Shuttle will not operate.
  • EYMS Service 64 will have an extra journey from Hull to Castle Hill Hospital at 0615, returning at 0701
  • EYMS Service X46 will have an extra journey from Pocklington to York at 0725
  • EYMS Service X57 will have an extra journey from Gilberdyke to Hull at 0708, with the 0855 X56 Elloughton to Goole starting in Hull at 0820
  • EYMS Friday and Saturday evening only journeys on routes 18, 75, 121 and X47 shall not operate (i.e. a normal Thursday evening service will operate)
  • Stagecoach Service 25 in North East Lincolnshire will operate a normal Thursday service
  • York Pullman Service X36 will operate a normal Thursday service
(As a result the usual Thursday variation to Stagecoach service 260 'Barton Villager' will not be provided, meaning no East Halton-Barton service between Christmas and New Year. The Dam Road area of Barton which is also served by the 260 on Thursday's is at least served by the Barton Town Service on Wednesday and Friday).

Friday 30th - A Saturday service will be provided, except BusKing and Hornsby Travel who will provide a normal Friday service. There are exceptions as follows:

  • EYMS Services 360, 361, S1, S2 and S3 will operate a normal Friday service
  • EYMS Services 106, 107, 143, 160, 195, X36 and the Beverley Town Shopper Shuttle will not operate
  • EYMS Service 64 will have an extra journey from Hull to Castle Hill Hospital at 0615, returning at 0701
  • EYMS Service X46 will have an extra journey from Pocklington to York at 0725
  • EYMS Service X57 will have an extra journey from Gilberdyke to Hull at 0708, with the 0855 X56 Elloughton to Goole starting in Hull at 0820
  • Stagecoach service 25 in North East Lincolnshire will operate a normal Friday service
  • York Pullman Service X36 will operate a normal Friday service
New Years Eve - Normal Saturday service with an early evening finish around 6-8pm. Stagecoach will not be providing their usual limited evening and nightbuses in Hull this year.

New Years Day - Special afternoon and evening services will be provided on certain routes in the Hull area only, in connection with events to mark the start of Hull City of Culture 2017:

34: Hull-Willerby
56: Hull-Longhill-Asda Bilton
57: Hull-Hessle
62: Hull-Setting Dyke
66: Hull-Hessle
105: Hull-Cottingham Green (not The Lawns)
115: Hull-Cottingham Burton Road (not Castle Hill Hospital)
151: Hull-Anlaby-Willerby
Each route will have 4 journeys each way, providing late afternoon journeys into Hull, and teatime/late evening returns.

1: Hull-Boothferry Estate - Half Hourly afternoon service
2: Hull-Boothferry Estate - Half Hourly afternoon service
3: Hull-Greatfield - Every 20 minutes afternoon service
3: Hull-Orchard Park - Half Hourly afternoon service
4: Hull-Bilton Grange - Half Hourly afternoon service
4: Hull-Orchard Park - Half Hourly afternoon service
5: Hull-Orchard Park-Kingswood - Every 20 minutes afternoon service
7: Hull-Sutton Park-North Point-Kingswood - Half Hourly afternoon service
10: Hull-North Point-North Bransholme - Half Hourly afternoon service
11: Hull-North Point-Kingswood - Half Hourly afternoon service
12: Hull-North Point - Half Hourly afternoon service
14: Hull-Greatfield - Half Hourly afternoon service
All services then have evening journeys from Paragon Interchange on an 'as required by passenger' basis, from 2045 onwards.
Park and Ride will also operate every 15 minutes in the afternoon, and again mid-evening.

Bank Holiday Monday 2nd - A Sunday service will be provided. First York will provide a half hourly frequency on service 10 to Stamford Bridge.

Monday 12 December 2016

EYMS 106/107 Changes

When Hull University term resumes in January, EYMS will be adding a new journey to Saturday 'nightbus' 106; the current 4 year round journeys from Hull City Centre to Cottingham will be supplemented by a new late evening departure from The Lawns Halls of Residence in Cottingham at 2250 to Spiders Nightclub on Cleveland Street in Hull, operating via Cottingham Green, Hull University, Beverley Road, Bond Street in Hull City Centre and Club Valbon. This new journey will only operate during university term times, starting January 21st, and unlike the existing service 106 journeys will not serve the residential areas in West Cottingham.

However at the same time 'term-time' nightbus 107 from Hull University to the The Lawns will no longer have 0345 and 0415 departures from the University on Saturday night/Sunday morning, with the last departure from the University at 0315. The 0345 and 0415 journeys were only introduced in October.

Saturday 10 December 2016

East Riding Bus Cuts final proposals

Earlier this year I covered (here, here and here), potential cuts to subsidised bus services by East Riding of Yorkshire Council (ERYC). On Tuesday 13th December, the council cabinet will consider the final proposals. Most of the proposed cuts will go ahead as planned if approved, but some contracts have been 'saved' and demand responsive services will be introduced as partial replacement in parts of the county to avoid villages being left entirely unserved. Whilst a couple of decisions appear questionable, it is good to see some mitigation from the original proposals. The supporting papers for the cabinet contain extensive information, so I have picked out some key and interesting points.

The following services proposed for withdrawal entirely will now continue:
  • 124: Boynton-Driffield/Ruston Parva-Bridlington Wednesday and Thursday 'shopper' service - villages would have been left unserved by the bus network - average 6 passengers per journey at a cost of £2.49 per passenger journey
  • 173: Withernsea-Hull Saturday 'shopper' service - villages would have been left unserved by the bus network - average 18 passengers per journey at a cost of £4.05 per passengerjourney
  • 196: Aughton-York Tuesday 'shopper' service - may change day of operation, villages would have been left unserved by the bus network - average 18 passengers per journey at a cost of £2.18 per passenger journey
  • 486/487: Selby-Hensall-Snaith Monday and Friday 'shopper' circular - reason given as "Accept NYCC tender for local bus service (Cost Reduction)", has been costing 43p per passenger journey with an average 20 passengers
  • 488: Selby-Goole Wednesday 'shopper' service - reason given as "Accept NYCC tender for local bus service (Cost Reduction)", has been costing £2.47 per passenger journey with an average 17 passengers
Additionally the Monday, Wednesday and Friday diversion of the 221 Aldbrough-Hull via Garton will be retained to retain a link from the village to Hull. This diversion has an average zero passengers per journey, 97 annual passengers and a £8.79 per passenger journey cost. Why is this being funded still with such low usage, and why 3 days a week? If retaining such a little used service is valued so much, why not just fund it one day a week?

The following service groups have amended proposals:

45/46 Bridlington-Driffield-Pocklington-York:
  • The Saturday 0905 46A Pocklington-Driffield will no longer be funded between Midldeton on the Wolds and Driffield as previously proposed, and neither will the return 1255 46A Driffield-York between Driffield and Market Weighton. The weekday equivalent is not impacted.
  • The Monday to Saturday 1345 45 York-Bridlington will no longer be funded between Pocklington and Bridlington, as previously proposed, along with the return 1545 46 Bridlington-York between Bridlington and Pocklington.
  • The Monday to Saturday 1635 45 Bridlington-York will now continue to be funded but be retimed and rerouted via Bainton and Middleton on the Wolds to partially replace the 1545 departure from Bridlington. The return 1835 45 York-Bridlington will also continue to be funded. The justification given is the "adverse effect on journeys to work"
  • Subsidised evening and Sunday services will no longer be funded as per the original proposals
78/79/80/277 Hull-Hedon:
  • The Saturday 0640 277 Hull to Hedon and return 0727 79 will have funding withdrawn as planned.
  • Funding for the weekday 1102 and 1452 service 78's from Hedon to Hull to operate via Paull will cease as planned, but funding for the 1302 from Hedon to serve Paull will be retained, for Paull residents travelling back from Hedon. Remaining Hedon-Hull services via Paull will potentially be at 0827, 1002, 1302 and 1722 (depending on any commercial changes)
  • On Saturday's funding for the 0827, 1002 and 1452 service 78's from Hedon to serve Paull will be withdrawn, but funding for the 1302 retained. Remaining Hedon-Hull services via Paull will potentially be at 0915, 1102, 1302 and 1722
  • Weekday service 80 will still have funding withdrawn for diversions via Paull or the Westlands Estate in Hedon
  • The Stagecoach operated Monday to Saturday evening service would no longer be funded, except for the 1810 78 Hull to Hedon and 1850 277 Hedon to Hull return, which was proposed to have it's funding withdrawn along with the rest of the service. This is for the benefit of commuters and was 'mooted' as a possibility in the original consultation.
  • The Sunday service will have funding withdrawn entirely as originally planned.
142 Beverley-Middleton on the Wolds:
  • The Saturday extensions from Holme to Middleton on the Wolds will be retained. This service has an average 1 passenger per journey at a cost of £7.77 per passenger journey and has a weekday alternative. I do question if retaining these extensions is the best of use money with such low usage and an available alternative during the week.
  • Sunday services will have funding withdrawn as planned
246: Hornsea-Beverley-Hull:
  • Funding for the weekday 0605 Hornsea-Beverley and the 0700 Beverley-Hornsea as far as Brandesburton will be retained for commuters.
  • Funding for the Monday to Saturday 0635, 1030, 1230 and 1430 Hornsea-Hull between Hornsea and Beverley, the 1915 Hornsea-Beverley, the 0815 Beverley-Hornsea (Sat only) and the 0940, 1140, 1340 and 1750 Hull to Hornsea between Beverley and Hornsea will be withdrawn as planned, leaving a 2 hourly daytime services and limited later evening journeys.
  • Funding for Sunday journeys will be withdrawn as planned.
All other services proposed to have funding withdrawn will see their funding withdrawn as planned subject to ERYC's cabinet approving the final proposals.

Interestingly the following contracts being withdrawn received no comments during EYRC's consultation:
  • 270: Driffield-Beeford
  • 517: Bridlington Town Service, one peak journey
  • 523: Beverley-Molescroft, Sunday
  • 549: Withernsea Town Service
  • Village Link services in Holderness
Finally ERYC have published EYMS's response to the consultation earlier this year. They question the heavy weighting against evening and Sunday services with less people working the traditional 9-5 Monday to Friday schedule. They also question the effectiveness of demand responsive services as replacements to traditional bus services (as opposed to supplementing them); EYMS's submission note they are difficult to market to non-residents and of little use for short notice travel. A 2003 service in the Pocklington area is noted as having been replaced by traditional bus services at lower cost. 

EYMS state they will put any service due have funding withdrawn into one of three categories:
  • 'Free standing' services with no commercial future - these will be withdrawn, with the Market Weighton shopper services S1/S2/S3 quoted as an example.
  • 'Minor supplements to current commercial services' - these will be considered for continued commercial operation, with the Sunday morning service 105 quoted as an example
  • 'Major supplements to current commercial services' - these will require timetable recasts with services 45/46 and 246 quoted as examples.
EYMS then note that the loss of withdrawn contracts means margins "will fall well below the level that is essential for EYMS to continue to replace its assets". Most of the 'at-risk' services are off-peak, limiting vehicle savings to 4 and meaning a lower utilisation of vehicles. "Further economies from the commercial network are inevitable". EYMS state only a third of lost revenue will be covered by fuel and wage savings. Ominous.

EYMS included some financial information:
2013 Net Profit - £652,0000
2014 Turnover - £30.8 million
2014 Net Profit - £694,000
2015 Turnover - £29.93 million
2015 Net Profit - £156,000 (0.5% of turnover)
Capital spend on buses since January 2014 - £5 million

And also this interesting nugget:
Since 2002 bus speeds in Hull have slowed from 10.8mph to 9.1mph. The current network could be operated with 15% fewer buses if traffic conditions returned what they were in 2002/3.

Saturday 3 December 2016

Selwyn Motors 292 withdrawn

Some sad news to report - the long standing 292 Saturday service from Belton to Doncaster via Epworth and Sandtoft operated by Selwyn Motors is being withdrawn at the end of the year. The service provides an 0945 departure from Belton, arriving in Doncaster at 1042, with the return service leaving Doncaster at 1600.

From North Lincolnshire Council:

292The Belton to Doncaster service will stop operating on 31 December 2016.  Passengers who wish to travel to Doncaster can contact CallConnect

Sunday 20 November 2016

EYMS 23 Axed

After operation on Saturday 26th November, EYMS will cease Hull service 23, which was introduced on 11th April this year, providing an hourly off peak Monday to Saturday service between Hull Interchange, Chanterlands Avenue, Fairfax Avenue, Cottingham Road, Chanterlands Avenue North, Chanterlands Avenue and Hull Interchange. It was the only bus service for Fairfax Avenue and Chanterlands Avenue North.

EYMS say the withdrawal is due to low passenger numbers. At least they tried. I guess the more frequent bus services available in the area were more attractive. From the top of both Fairfax Avenue and Chanterlands Avenue North, EYMS services 103 and 105 on Cottingham Road are only a short walk away, whilst from the bottom of both roads Stagecoach service 3 is only a short walk away.

Saturday 19 November 2016

Service 150 Axed

From January, Stagecoach service 150 between East Halton and Immingham, via North Killingholme, South Killingholme and Habrough, will cease operating as part of major changes to associated service 5 between Grimsby and Immingham, with no replacement being provided. The 150 currently provides 3 Monday to Saturday daytime journeys that upon arrival in Immingham become a through service 5 to Grimsby. North Lincolnshire Council have released the following press release this week:
Council steps in to keep East Halton and North Killingholme connected

18 November 2016

From 31 December 2016, the 150 bus service from East Halton to Immingham will no longer run. North Lincolnshire Council has stepped in to keep East Halton and North Killingholme residents connected.

Stagecoach East Midlands – the operator of the 150 bus – has decided to stop the service and to extend the frequency of their number 5 bus between Immingham and Grimsby, via South Killingholme. From January 2017, the number 5 bus will run every 20 minutes.

Residents in East Halton and North Killingholme can use the new CallConnect flexible bus service to get out and about whenever they want. They can hop on the purple CallConnect bus to go shopping in Barton or Immingham, visit friends in other villages, or to connect to the number 5 bus to get to Grimsby.

The CallConnect bus has no set route or timetable and residents can register with the service and then book a journey for anytime between 7am and 7pm, Monday to Friday and from 8am to 6pm on Saturdays.

You can register with CallConnect online now. Once registered, you can book your journeys between an hour and a week in advance, online or through the booking centre on 0345 2638139.

Cllr Neil Poole, cabinet member for Environment at North Lincolnshire Council, said:
“We know that buses can be a lifeline in rural communities and we do not want residents in East Halton or North Killingholme to feel isolated after the cancellation of the 150 service. We are stepping in and encouraging residents to sign up to use the CallConnect bus service.

“The advantage of CallConnect over a conventional bus service is that you can choose where you want to go and book your journey at a time that suits you. CallConnect has proved to be very popular in North Lincolnshire with over 1,700 already registered to use the service. It gives people the freedom and independence to get out and about whenever they want.”

CallConnect is available in North Lincolnshire across Ferry ward; Brigg, Caistor and Ridge ward; East Butterwick; Barton, Burton upon Stather and Winterton; and, the Isle of Axholme.
The background to this is that Stagecoach and North East Lincolnshire Council and Stagecoach have secured Department for Transport funding to increase the daytime frequency of service 5 between Grimsby and Immingham from half hourly to every 15 minutes, although according to the above North Lincolnshire Council (NLC) press release it will be every 20 minutes. At the same time half hourly extensions will serve the new Able UK development at Killingholme, the CATCH training facility and Phillips 66 Oil Refinery - linking people to jobs and education.

As I noted at the time, Able UK and Philips 66 would not easily be served by the same half hourly extension as that to CATCH, which left the question of what would happen to the South Killingholme extensions to service 5, and to the associated 150 and 450. Service 450 has had amendments registered with VOSA, so must be staying in some form or another, and I assume from NLC's press release that South Killingholme will continue to be served, although surely as an extension of Grimsby to Immingham services rather than as an 'en-route' destination as implied by NLC? Service 150 clearly hasn't survived the changes however. Overall the changes look set to benefit more people than are disadvantaged, but that won't mean much to service 150's users.

However I don't see how NLC can accurately claim to be "stepping in to keep ... residents connected". Callconnect is not new, it started earlier this year. All NLC are doing is promoting an existing service - and oddly not mentioning that East Halton's other daytime bus service, a Thursday only diversion to service 260 that provides a link to Barton. Surely an ideal time to promote this?

Sunday 13 November 2016

EYMS MX1 details

EYMS have released details of new service MX1 between Pocklington and Monks Cross, York. It will operate between Saturday 26th November and Sunday 31st December on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday, for Christmas and post-Christmas sales shopping, serving Barmby Moor, Wilberfoss, Kexby and Dunnington en-route. At Monks Cross, the Shopping Park, the Vangarde Shopping Park and Sainsburys will all be served. Connections are available at Pocklington from service X46 from Hull, Beverley and Market Weighton.

The Monday, Wednesday and Thursday timetable comprises a single journey in each direction, leaving Pocklington at 1035 and Monks Cross Vangarde Shopping Park at 1310, giving shoppers around 2 hours at Monks Cross. I presume these times are to fit in between school services. On Saturdays the timetable is more extensive with departures from Pocklington at 1035, 1235 and 1435, and from Monks Cross Vangarde Shopping Park at 1310, 1510 and 1710. The Saturday timetable will also apply between Wednesday 28th and Friday 30th December inclusive (EYMS normally run a Saturday service on most routes on the normal working days between Christmas and New Year).

The Saturday 1035 would appear to return out of service from Monks Cross to Pocklington and likewise the 1710 would appear to require an out of service trip from Pocklington to Monks Cross. Understandable for a temporary Christmas service aimed at Monks Cross shoppers, but if the service was ever made year round running these journeys in service may be useful for local travel between Pocklington and Dunnington. Lets hope a permanent MX1 will be a realistic possibility after this temporary period of operation! Maybe even a similar service to the Designer Outlet South of York, which could route via the University of York campus for additional custom?

Sunday 30 October 2016

Interconnect 51 Reduction

From tomorrow, Monday 31st October, the hourly Monday to Saturday Grimsby to Tetney journeys on Stagecoach Interconnect service 51 will no longer operate, with the main Grimsby to Louth journeys unaffected. As a result the frequency between Grimsby and Holton Le Clay reduces from half hourly to hourly, and Tetney's only conventional bus service will be provided by limited service 50.

Stagecoach 9 Changes

Stagecoach are revising Monday to Saturday service 9 in East Hull from tomorrow, Monday 31st October, following cuts to subsidised bus service funding by Hull City Council. Aside from some minor retimings, the West Hull and Cottingham part of the service is unchanged.

The current 9k variation becomes a service 9a, following it's current route in East Hull between Hull Paragon Interchange and Leads Road before routing via Robson Way, Howdale Road, Kestrel Avenue and Noddle Hill Way to North Point Shopping Centre, as opposed to the current 9k which routes via Dorchester Road to North Point before operating a clockwise loop via Noddle Hill Way, Kestrel Avenue, Howdale Road and Robson Way back to North Point. The 9a will opeate hourly off peak, as the 9k did, and combine with service 9 to provide a half hourly service over common sections of route in Garden Village and an almost half hourly service on Leads Road. Daytime service 9 will also cease to serve Dorchester Road and instead operate direct via Midmere Avenue from Leads Road to North Point.

The current 0750 service 9 from Castle Hill Hospital in Cottingham to North Point becomes a 0750 from Castle Hill to Paragon Interchange and a 0845 service 9a from Paragon Interchange to North Point, replacing the withdrawn 0915 9k from Paragon Interchange. The weekday only 0845 service 9 from James Reckitt Avenue to Paragon Interchange will also operate on Saturdays and extends to Castle Hill, replacing the 0915 from Paragon Interchange to Castle Hill. The Saturday only service 9 from Paragon Interchange to Noddle Hill at 1615 will operate as a 9a to North Point, providing a later last service for Howdale Road and Kestrel Avenue. There are minor retimings to other journeys as well, including the peak time journeys to Noddle Hill which have not been rerouted.

East Hull Changes

Halloween (Monday 31st October) sees some major changes to certain services in East Hull, with a selection of good and bad news.

EYMS had won Hull City Council tendered service 16 from Stagecoach. The route links Hull Paragon Interchange with the Marina, Victoria Dock, Newbridge Road, the Preston Road Estate and Marfleet Village, operating every hour Monday to Saturday daytimes, but with a reduction to two hourly after the morning peak planned with the start of EYMS's new contract.

Now Stagecoach have registered a revised service 16 commercially. The 'new' 16 will continue to operate hourly Monday to Saturday daytimes, and will now serve the new Siemens factory. The revised route will however cease to serve Hull Marina, the Humber View part of Victoria Dock and Marfleet Village. In the Preston Road Estate a clockwise circular will be provided via Preston Road, Holmpton Grove, St John's Grove, Exeter Grove and Southcoates Lane. These changes enable an hourly service to provide with one vehicle, unlike the previous timetable that was an 85 minute round trip.

To continue providing a service to Hull Marina and the Humber View area of Victoria Dock, Hull City Council are subsidising the diversion of EYMS operated journeys on service 78 between Hull and Hedon on Monday to Saturdays only to serve these areas. Stagecoach Monday to Saturday evening and EYMS Sunday daytime services on route 78 will omit Hull Marina and only serve part of Victoria Dock, as at present. These changes provide Hull Marina and Humber View with a roughly two hourly daytime service, which they would have received off peak had the originally planned cuts to service 16 taken place.

In addition EYMS are also starting services to the Siemens factory, with Monday to Saturday journeys on service 78 as well as infrequent Monday to Saturday service 79 and infrequent weekday service 80 all serving the site. Again Stagecoach Monday to Saturday evening and EYMS Sunday daytime services on route 78 will omit this new section of route.

Due to the changes to services 78 and 79, most times on these routes have changed by up to 10 minutes, as have those on associated service 277 between Hull and Hedon via Bilton.

I don't know what the net impact on Hull City Council's budget is, but good news for access to the Siemens factory and good news for the part of Victoria Dock that retains the 16, Newbridge Road and the Preston Road Estate which avoid a planned off peak frequency reduction to the 16. Bad news for Hull Marina and Humber View, though frequency cuts would have happened if the 16 was still serving these areas, bad news for Hedon and Paull to Hull City Centre travellers who will have slightly longer journey times (but if it helps improve the viability of the 78 maybe a good thing?), and very bad news for Marfleet Village whose residents will now have to walk to Hedon Road to access bus services.

Saturday 29 October 2016

Grimsby Service 11 withdrawn

Today (Saturday 29th October), Stagecoach service 11 in Grimsby operated for the last time. The route was introduced in May linking Grimsby Town Centre, Grimsby Hospital and the Matthew Telford Park residential area, operating Monday to Saturday morning and early afternoons. It had been funded by North East Lincolnshire Council but had not been used sufficiently.

Matthew Telford Park is not being left totally without bus services though. In addition to a Phone 'n' Ride demand responsive service, Stagecoach operated Lincolnshire County Council tendered service 25 from Ludford and Binbrook to Grimsby is being diverted via Matthew Telford Park from Monday 31st October. This will provide one weekday peak service and one Tuesday/Friday/Saturday daytime service to and from Grimsby Town Centre, which while not much is better than nothing and will be an option for some commuters, unlike service 11.

Sunday 23 October 2016

1D and 1E become 21 and 51

After operation on Saturday 29th October, EYMS services 1D and 1E operated under contract to Hull City Council will be replaced by new services 21 and 51, starting on Monday 31st October and also operated under contract to Hull City Council. EYMS say the change has been made to help services keep to time, and at the request of Hull City Council. To operate the revised services using the current two vehicles, cutbacks have been made, though there are some improvements as well.

Currently the 1D and 1E offer a combined hourly Monday to Saturday daytime frequency between Mizzen Road/Compass Road in North Hull, Beverley Road, Bridlington Avenue, Hull City Centre, Hull Royal Infirmary, Hessle Road Asda, Askew Avenue and Sibelius Road in West Hull. In West Hull journeys alternate between serving Boulevard, Selby Street and St Georges Road (service 1E) or Hawthorn Avenue and North Road (service 1D).

New service 21 will replace the North Hull parts of services 1D and 1E, but extending at the northern end of the route to Kingswood Retail Park, a link previously provided by service 1C. The frequency will be reduced to every 90 minutes off peak, with hourly peak time journeys not extending to Kingswood.

Service 51 will replace the 1E in West Hull, also operating every 90 minutes Monday to Saturday daytimes (every 80 minutes late afternoon). Service 1D via Hawthorn Avenue and North Road is not being replaced, leaving these roads without a bus service. As a result whilst the sections of route served by both the 1D and 1E see a reduction in frequency, those areas served only by the two hourly 1E gain a frequency increase.

Saturday 22 October 2016

EYMS 50 Revised

Following the award of a new tender by Hull City Council, EYMS Monday to Saturday service 50 in Hull will be revised from Monday 31st October. It will continue to operate between Holderness Road Morrisons, Broadway Drive, Jalland Lodge (Bilton Grange), James Reckitt Avenue, Laburnum Avenue, Holderness Road and Hull Paragon Interchange, but Gillshill Road and Lambwath Road will no longer be served. The Lambwath Road diversion was introduced after Stagecoach service 53 was withdrawn, but this was later replaced with service 9k.

The timetable will also be revised, with one less journey on Saturdays. The current 0910 from Holderness Road/Mount Pleasant to Morrisons, and 1045, 1230, 1415 (Sat Only) and 1640 from Hull Interchange to Morrisons are replaced by departures from Hull Interchange at 0900, 1030, 1200 and 1330. From Morrisons departures at 0950, 1135, 1320, 1505 (Sat Only) and 1725 become 0940, 1110, 1240 and 1410. This is a more memorable timetable but with a shorter operating period.

Sunday 2 October 2016

Extra Uni Nightbuses

From the first full week of October, EYMS will add extra journeys to it's 107 nightbus service between the University of Hull, Cottingham and The Lawns student accommodation. The service operates during university terms on Wednesday and Saturday nights (Thursday and Sunday morning). The timetable now has departures from the University at 0145, 0215, 0245, 0315 (Sat only), 0345 (New, Sat only) and 0415 (New, Sat only).

A Cancellation and a Registration.

Two interesting VOSA registrations from EYMS that appeared on Friday:

Cancellation Accepted: Operating between Hull Interchange and Fairfax Avenue given service number 23 effective from 28-Nov-2016.

Registration Accepted
  • Starting Point: Pocklington
  • Finish Point: Monks Cross
  • Via: Wilberfoss, Dunnington
  • Service Number: MX1
  • Service Type: Normal Stopping
  • Effective Date: 26-NOV-2016
  • Other Details: New Service
Health Warning: VOSA registration summaries don't always show the 'full' story of what is happening.

The 23 was started earlier this year to reintroduce a bus service for Chanterlands Avenue North and Fairfax Avenue in Hull. Monks Cross is a large retail park in North East York, which means the Saturday start date of the service makes sense. It will be interesting to see if the MX1 operates on any other days of the week, and if it is just a temporary Christmas service or an attempt to start a new permanent service.

Sunday 25 September 2016

Wolds Villager returns to Humberside Airport

From tomorrow, Monday 26th September, the weekday 68 Wolds Villager service operated by Hornsby Travel on behalf of North Lincolnshire Council will resume serving Humberside Airport. The service otherwise links Brigg with Wrawby, Barnetby, Melton Ross, Kirmington, Croxton, Wootton and Ulceby.

The areas road network has suffered major disruption in the past couple of years, with a weight restriction on the A18 Melton Ross rail bridge and the construction of a new roundabout at Barnetby Top, which has necessitated temporary timetables for the 68 focused on serving local villages. With the weight restriction lifted earlier this year and the roundabout complete, the 68 once again has time to serve Humberside Airport without compromising frequency.

Departures from Brigg Cary Lane are at 0955 (to Humberside Airport), 1055 to Humberside Airport, 1155 (to Kirmington or Ulceby), 1410 (to Kirmington), 1515 (School Hols, to Barnetby) and 1615 (to Barnetby). In the opposite direction there are departures at 0750 from Barnetby, 0919 from Kirmington (starts Ulceby on Tue+Thu), 1020 and 1120 from Humberside Airport, 1252 from Kirmington (starts Ulceby Tue+Thu), 1438 from Kirmington and 1530 (School Hols) and 1630 from Barnetby. Some afternoon journeys also serve Brigg Leisure Centre.

As can be seen the timetable isn't that useful for Humberside Airport, and it is more a case of as the service is passing by it might as well serve the airport, or use it as a convenient place to turn around. When combined with the demand responsive Call Connect service the 68 may be off more use for the airport, or as means of connecting onto the Humber Flyer which serves the airport.

There will be more disruption to the local road network in the coming years as the Melton Ross rail bridge needs replacing, but this should be minimal as the new bridge will be slightly north of the existing one.

Sunday 18 September 2016

EYMS Anlaby Morning Peak Improvements

EYMS are improving the morning peak service from Anlaby into Hull from Monday 26th September. There is a new weekday 0802 from Anlaby on service 152, plugging a 40 minute gap in what is otherwise a 20 minute frequency.

In addition, this new journey, the weekday 0645 and 0715 and Saturday 0855 and 0925 service 152's from Anlaby will serve the Anlaby 'loop', via Lowfield Road, Beverley Road and Wilson Street, as occurs Monday to Saturday daytimes and Sunday evenings. Lowfield Road is seeing significant new housing development which maybe at least part of the reason for this change.

Extra EYMS Evening Services

From Monday 26th September, EYMS are enhancing Monday to Saturday evening services on routes 115 and 154 between Hull Interchange and Castle Hill Hospital; the two routes operate as a circular for most journeys, with the 115 operating via the Avenues, Endike Lane and Cottingham and the 154 via Anlaby Road, Springfield Way and Willerby.

To suit new visiting times at Castle Hill Hospital there will be a new 1950 115 from Hull (currently last bus 1920) and 2039 115 from Castle Hill Hospital (currently last bus 2009). On service 154 extra journeys will depart Hull at 1955 (currently last bus 1925) and at 2032 from Castle Hill Hospital (currently last bus 2002).

In addition EYMS will add extra 'short' journeys on service 115 between Hull Interchange and Endike Lane. Services will leave Hull at 2030, 2130, 2230 and 2330, and from Endike Lane at 2151 and 2251. This will provide an 'all evening' service Monday to Saturday for Endike Lane, and provide additional evening buses for the popular Avenues area bars and restaurants.

Sunday 11 September 2016

Wroot Changes

One change I missed earlier in the month was the withdrawal of First South Yorkshire Monday to Saturday service 59 from Wroot to Doncaster. It offered one morning journey from Wroot, and an afternoon journey in each direction (plus I think some extra journeys wholly within South Yorkshire). This provided a basic shopping and leisure link from the North Lincolnshire village.

As a partial replacement, the Hornsby Travel operated Isle of Axholme CallConnect now offers a regular weekday journey from Wroot to Blaxton in South Yorkshire at 0908, with a 1325 return, for connections onto Isle Coaches service 291 to/from Doncaster. At any other time of the day Monday to Saturday daytimes, the 'demand responsive' CallConnect service can be pre-booked for Doncaster connections on First service 57 or Isle Coaches 291/399 at Blaxton.

Not the same as a through bus, but at least a 'regular' 'timetabled' bus service can still be used by anyone in Wroot wishing to travel to Doncaster.

Monday 5 September 2016

Hull Bus Cuts Decision

Hull City Council have decided on changes to supported bus services within the city, which will result in cost savings to contribute towards budget cuts. Thankfully overall they aren't too drastic, but for those impacted I'm sure they won't be saying that. It should be noted options to cut services back further were rejected. Further details are contained in this report from council officers.

Services 1D, 1E, 16 and 50 will be operated by EYMS from 30th October 2016 to 31st October 2019 for a cost of £169,863.04 per year. There is an option to extend each contract for up to 12 months (it is worth noting the 1D/1E is two separate contracts for the Sibelius Road and Mizzen Road sections). The decision was based on 80% price and 20% quality.

Services 1D and 1E will not see any "significant changes to service frequency" but service 50 will reduce from every 1 3/4 hours to every 2 hours. The biggest change will come on service 16, which is currently operated by Stagecoach. From the takeover by EYMS onwards, the frequency will reduce from hourly to every two hours after the morning peak period.

A contract for services from the Dorchester Road and Kestrel Avenue areas to North Point Shopping Centre, currently provided by variations to Stagecoach commercial service 9, has not been awarded. No compliant tenders were received and tenders for the existing service exceeded the available budget. Instead it is recommended that efforts are made to agree with bus operators a deal to cover Kestrel Avenue, through a de minimis variation to a commercial service. "Initial discussions with local bus companies" indicate this will be possible and should result in a cost saving as compared to awarding a contract. No doubt Stagecoach will be continuing to provide this link.

Dorchester Road seems likely to be left without a service. Council officers note that changes to commercial (Stagecoach) services over the last two years have provided more frequent services on nearby roads, and that the Dorchester Road service "simply provides a shorter walk to the nearest bus stop".

Service 9 also receives funding for diversions in West Hull, to serve the Grammar School Road area; this diversion is also part funded by East Riding of Yorkshire Council, which wishes to withdraw it's share of support. The Hull City Council decision instructs officers to "engage with bus companies to finalise agreements" for services in this area to continue, again another de minimis arrangement.

"Minor" financial contributions to some 'out of city' services will also end from 1st April 2017 (not 31st October 2016 as officers recommended). This covers service 350 tendered by North Lincolnshire Council, and services 78/277 and 105 tendered by East Riding of Yorkshire Council. The 105 must cover two Sunday morning return journeys that East Riding of Yorkshire Council wish to withdraw funding for, and I guess the 350 covers the EYMS operated Monday to Saturday evening or Sunday journeys as I think all Stagecoach journeys are commercially operated; East Riding of Yorkshire Council also wish to withdraw funding for their share of the EYMS operated Monday to Saturday evening journeys. It is not clear what service 78/277 journeys are impacted. These contributions are below £1000, though it is not clear if that is per service or for all the services concerned, and I can only presume the contribution is per annum.

Some happy news to end on - Stagecoach have said they will require no subsidy for service 6 from 1st April 2017 to maintain the current service level.

Sunday 4 September 2016

Stagecoach 450 Weekday Afternoon Change

Tomorrow, Monday 5th September, Stagecoach are amending the weekday timetable on service 450, between Immingham and Barton. The 1445 from Immingham to Barton, which starts in Grimsby at 1415 as service 5, will only operate on Saturdays, and be replaced on weekdays by a 1345 Immingham to Barton, not starting in Grimsby but offering a connection from the 1315 service 5 from Grimsby.

I presume this relates to changes in the school day at Baysgarth School in Barton, where Stagecoach did, and I guess still do, hold a school bus contract. While I can understand the reasons for the change, it is unfortunate. The previous 5/450 from Grimsby is at 1245 just half an hour earlier, and the next 5 to Ulceby is not until 1715, four hours later. Also unless weekday shoppers into Grimsby from Barrow, Thornton Curtis or Wootton fancy an early 0830 arrival, they will only have 2 hours 15 minutes between the next 1100 arrival and needing to catch the 1315 bus home (or else use Call Connect from South Killingholme or Ulceby).

Tuesday 30 August 2016

Stagecoach to takeover Amvale 50

Going by this tweet from Stagecoach East Midlands, they are taking over Amvale Monday to Saturday service 50 from Saltfleet into Grimsby, via North Somercotes, North Coates and Tetney on Thursday 1st September. Currently there are two morning journeys from Saltfleet into Grimsby, at 0735 and 1030, and two afternoon journeys from Grimsby Riverhead Exchange at 1400 and 1732. The first journey extends to Grimsby College and the last journey starts at the college.

The new Stagecoach timetable increases to 3 or 4 journeys each way, thanks to 'positioning journeys' being operated 'in service' - so the extra journeys won't make a huge difference, but if they make a difference to someone then are worthwhile. Departures from Grimsby Riverhead Exchange are at 0630, 0920 (Sat Only), 1445 (Schooldays)/1450 (School Holidays+Sat) and 1732 (starts Grimsby College). From Saltfleet departures are at 0735 (to Grimsby College on schooldays), 1030, 1600 (Sat Only) and 1800.

As a result of this change, the only other operators of local service buses in Grimsby are Grayscroft Coaches and Hunts Coaches with their Tuesday Only shoppers services from Sandilands/Mablethorpe/Louth and Skegness/Alford respectively.

Monday 29 August 2016

Extra Bridlington Town Services

EYMS are adding extra journeys to some of their Bridlington Town Services from Monday 5th September,

The 1420 service 507 from Bridlington Bus Station to New Pasture Lane will now operate on Wednesday schooldays, as well as on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday schooldays. This fills a two hour gap in the Wednesday schoolday service on route 507. This journey also runs in school holidays and on Saturdays as a circular back to Bridlington Bus Station.

On service 512, the 1405 from Bridlington Bus Station now runs on Wednesdays schooldays as well as all other weekdays and Saturdays. The following 1450 departure now runs on weekdays during school holidays as well as Saturdays. As a result a 2 hour 15 minute gap in departures on Wednesday schooldays reduces to 90 minutes, while a 90 minute gap on school holiday afternoons is eliminated with the usual 45 minute frequency operating all day.

Sunday 28 August 2016

EYMS Priory Road Corridor Minor Changes

From Monday 5th September, EYMS are making minor punctuality amendments to the times of their Priory Road services in Hull - 60/60A/61/62/64. Some journeys will operate earlier or later, and the weekday 0840 Anlaby Road/Calvert Lane junction to Castle Hill Hospital service will start back at Hull Interchange at 0818.

Saturday 27 August 2016

Stamford Bridge Service 10 Evening Reductions (But Could Have Been Withdrawal)

Reductions are taking place to the mid/late evening service on route 10 from Stamford Bridge to York and Poppleton, operated by Transdev York. This is due to City of York Council budget cuts.

From tomorrow onwards the Sunday and Bank Holiday evening service is withdrawn, and from Tuesday (30th) the Monday to Saturday evening service is reduced. The current hourly service requiring two vehicles is reduced to two 'full length' journeys, plus one extra York-Stamford Bridge 'short'. The last departure from York Piccadilly to Stamford Bridge is now slightly later at 2348 rather than 2328.

The entire evening service was at threat from withdrawal, but the York Press reports that local employer Rosti Automotive, East Riding of Yorkshire Council and Stamford Bridge Parish Council have each put £2000 per year towards the subsidy for the evening service to ensure that some level of evening service can be retained.

Friday 19 August 2016

York Pullman takeover 36/X36 from Transdev

York Pullman will takeover operation of tendered services 36 and service X36 from Transdev York on Tuesday 30th August.

On Monday to Saturday service 36 between Sutton Upon Derwent and York, the 0900, 1027, 1227, 1427 and 1627 from Sutton upon Derwent become 0900, 1020, 1220, 1420 and 1655 (1620 Sat) departures. From York current departures from Merchantgate at 1115, 1315 and 1515 become 0945, 1120, 1320 and 1610 on weekdays and 0950, 1120, 1320 and 1520 on Saturdays. Most journeys extend through to/start at York Station, and the 0945 (0950 Sat) from Merchantgate and 1655 (1620 Sat) from Sutton Upon Derwent will operate as service X36, omitting Wheldrake and Fulford.

The weekday peak time X36 between Pocklington and York only has minor changes to it's times, and the equivalent Saturday journeys remain operated by EYMS. York Pullman previously operate the weekday peak service X36 until Transdev purchased their local bus operations in 2012.

Sunday 31 July 2016

Some ideas work, Some don't - but at least they were tried.

Last September Stagecoach took over the East Riding of Yorkshire Council tender for Monday to Saturday evening services 78 and 277 between Hull and Hedon. They introduced two significant improvements - extending most services beyond Hull Interchange to the Avenues area, and a later Saturday departure on route 277. From next week (Monday 1st August), the Avenues extensions no longer operate, so I guess that initiative wasn't a success. The later Saturday service remains however, but departing Ferensway in Hull City Centre at 0030 as opposed to 0020, operating 10 minutes later throughout.

It should be noted that East Riding of Yorkshire Council are currently consulting on withdrawing the evening 78/277 services, except for possibly the 1810 service 78 from Hull Interchange.

Stagecoach Simplibus Hull Changes

Today, Sunday 31st July, Stagecoach have amended the timetables for most Simplibus routes in Hull, with some of the more notable being discussed below. There are various smaller changes not noted below, so this post is not comprehensive.

On a city wide note, all Saturday morning variations via Hull Royal Infirmary and Smith and Nephew are withdrawn, impacting service 3 from Greatfield and service 8, 11 and 12 from North Point. There are also reductions in the equivalent weekday variations on some routes (see below for details). Monday to Saturday early morning through journeys between services 2 and 3 (from Orchard Park) and services 10/10X are no longer shown in the revised timetables; neither are evening and Sunday through journeys between service 5 and services 11 and 12.

Weekday morning peak 1W variations via Smith and Nephew from Hull Interchange now operate every half hour rather than every 20 minutes. The weekday 0625 service 2 from Hull Interchange now starts at Monument Bridge at 0635.

On service 3 between Orchard Park and Greatfield the Monday to Saturday early morning timetables are extensively revised. In addition to the changes noted above, the 0700 from Greenwood Avenue to Hull Interchange now starts at Orchard Park Tesco and operates through to Greatfield, while the 0630 and 0700 from Greatfield to Hull Interchange now operate through to Orchard Park. On Saturdays all early morning journeys from Greenwood Avenue now start at Orchard Park, and operate through to Greatfield. This means earlier departures from Orchard Park Tesco than on weekdays and an earlier first service from Hull Interchange to Greatfield than on weekdays, at 0605 as opposed to 0657. The 0715 Hull Interchange to Greatfield is however withdrawn.

The last departure from Kingswood Retail Park on service 5 moves 5 minutes later on weekdays to 2315 but 10 minutes earlier on Sundays to 2300. There are also new earlier weekday departures from Hull Interchange at 0610 and 0640 (first departure previously 0705).

Weekday early morning journeys on service 10 from North Bransholme operate 5 minutes earlier "to improve connection times" onto services 8 and 11 at North Point. There is a new 0550 departure from North Bransholme, and the retimed 0635 from North Bransholme (was 0640) no longer operates via Hull Royal Infirmary and Smith and Nephew.

On service 11 the weekday 2345 from Ferensway is withdrawn, leaving a 2325 last departure from Hull Interchange. The last weekday and Sunday departure from Kingswood is 5 minutes later at 2335.

Service 12 has a revised early morning timetable; on weekdays the 0615, 0630 and 0645 from North Point via Smith and Nephew become 0530, 0600, 0630 and 0645 not serving Smith and Nephew. On Saturdays there is also a new 0600 from North Point, providing a first departure 15 minutes earlier than previously.

Hopefully this post has captured all the main changes - please leave a comment if not!

Sunday 17 July 2016

Stagecoach 5 - Funding Success for Major Changes

The Grimsby Telegraph reported this week that North East Lincolnshire Council's Sustainable Travel funding bid to the Department for Transport has been successful, and that part of the successful bid includes significant improvements to Stagecoach service 5 between Grimsby and Immingham.

Full details of the bid are available on the council website. For service 5, £200,000 of government funding will be used to 'Kick Start' major improvements to the service, alongside an investment of £150,000 by Stagecoach in two additional low floor buses and a further £20,000 from Stagecoach of "marketing design services" to assist in promotion. Service 5 will, as part of a quality partnership, double in daytime frequency from half hourly to every 15 minutes between Grimsby and Immingham, with a half hourly extension to the new Able UK industrial development at Killingholme as well as the CATCH training facility and the Philips 66 Oil Refinery. It is not stated if the frequency increase will just be on weekdays, or if Saturdays are included as well.

It isn't quite clear to me how this will work in practice, and how the South Killingholme extensions to the 5 and those journeys that continue beyong Immingham as service 150 or 450 will be affected. The peak time service 5 extensions to Habrough and Ulceby are also not mentioned. The Able UK site and Philips 66 Oil Refinery are north of Immingham, while CATCH is to the east on the Kiln Lane Industrial Estate already served at peak times as part of the MIC Plant extensions, and the three sites would not be easily served by the same half hourly extension.

Page 8 of the bid document also contains a map. The MIC Plant route is colour coded "5 bus service with increased frequency". There is then a route colour coded "New bus service" along Manby Road and Rosper Road to serve Able UK and Philips 66, which then continues along Crook Mill Road to Thornton Abbey and a map label "To Barton Upon Humber". South Killingholme is colour coded "150/450 bus service" along with North Killingholme and Habrough.

The map could suggest that after operating a 15 minute frequency to Immingham County Hotel, the service will then split to serve CATCH/MIC Plant/Kiln Lane or extend to Able UK. This could provide a half hourly service to both areas. The extension to Barton is intriguing, as it is not mentioned elsewhere within the bid document, and would no doubt require significant funding. It would however significantly improve public transport links to the Able UK site, as passengers from Hull or Scunthorpe could connect onto an Able UK service in the town. Any Barton extension would presumably be routed via East Halton village, not Crook Mill Road as shown on the map, and would serve Barrow as well en-route to Barton.

It is worth pointing out that the 150 and 450 are North Lincolnshire Council financially supported, and that South Killingholme, North Killingholme, East Halton and the Able UK site are in North Lincolnshire, not North East Lincolnshire. This, and the focus on access to employment and training in the bid document, may explain the lack of detail on services to villages North and West of Immingham.

The Kick Start approach was used successfully around 10 years ago to relaunch the Laceby Acres/Nunsthorpe-Grimsby-Cleethorpes routes (now services 3 and 4) with 10 minute frequencies. For service 5 it will subsidise the first year of the increased frequency, with the intention that fare income and developer contributions will ensure it becomes commercially sustainable afterwards.

This is exceptionally good news for travel between Grimsby and Immingham, and for access to employment and training sites around Immingham. The changes will be a real 'step-change' in provision with the potential to deliver significant growth in the use of bus services. Hopefully Habrough and North Lincolnshire villages such as South Killingholme will not see cutbacks as a result of these changes, and can retain through services to Grimsby.

Finally, the bid also includes plans for a cycle hub at Cleethorpes station, which could offer the potential for workers in the Immingham/South Humber Bank area to travel by train to Habrough and then cycle to work.
(Unless I missed it, I haven't seen any timescales or start dates quoted)