Tuesday 29 October 2019

Blog Notice: Comments

To everyone who has left comments in the past 18 months or so, a massive apology. The emails I used to get to notify me that a comment needed moderating - moderation being necessary due to spam comments - stopped and I never looked into the blog comment settings until tonight. I have now approved all the non-spam comments, and hopefully sorted out my email notification.

Monday 28 October 2019

Earlier Beverley to Hull first service

As part of East Yorkshire's initiative to improve early morning bus services in the Hull area, from Monday 2nd September service 121 gained a new part-route journey between Beverley and Hull Monday to Friday, departing Beverley at 0535. This is 30 minutes earlier than the previous first departure at 0605. Oddly though despite a 30 minute gap between the 0535 and 0605 departures, there is then an hour's gap until the next departure from Beverley at 0705.

Sunday 27 October 2019

Route 66 Improvements

Service 66 between Hull Paragon Interchange, Hull Royal Infirmary, the Boothferry Estate and Hessle was enhanced from Sunday 1st September. Operated by East Yorkshire, the improvements were part of a wider initiative by the operator to improve early morning and Sunday buses in the Hull area.

Monday to Friday morning new departures have been added from Hessle at 0510, 0540 and 0610 - first departure previously was at 0640 - and from Paragon Interchange at 0540 and 0610 - first departure previously was 0625.

On Sundays the daytime frequency has been increased from hourly to half hourly. Considering the Monday to Saturday daytime frequency is every 10 minutes, the previous hourly Sunday daytime service was a considerable reduction, although most of the 66 route is also covered by other services. Sunday evening services remain hourly, although retimed to improve co-ordination with the other route between Hull and Hessle, the 57.

Saturday 26 October 2019

Beverley Late Afternoon Cutback

East Yorkshire cutback the late afternoon service on their 520 and 521 circular Beverley Town Service routes from Monday 2nd September. The two routes each operate hourly Monday to Saturday daytimes and combine to give a half hourly service to the Swinemoor Estate in the east of the town. As part of the cutbacks the 1625 service 520 from Beverley Bus Station no longer operates Monday to Friday and the 1655 service 521 from the Bus Station no longer operates Monday to Saturday. The last journeys from the Bus Station are now the 1525 service 520 and 1555 service 521 departures Monday to Friday and the 1555 service 521 and 1625 service 520 departures on Saturdays.

Sunday 20 October 2019

450 now serves Immingham Town Centre

On Monday 2nd September, North Lincolnshire Council tendered service 450 between Immingham, Barton and Brigg, operated by Stagecoach, received a revised timetable and route. The service operates up to 4 journeys in each direction Monday to Saturday.

Between Immingham County Hotel terminus and South Killingholme the service now operates via Pelham Road in Immingham so as to serve the Civic Centre/Town Centre, and Habrough Church, as opposed to via the Manby Road industrial area and the A160. The previous route made sense when the 450 operated as an extension to service 5, as the 5 would serve the Civic Centre, however since the 450 became a separate service, there had been the rather odd situation of the service not serving Immingham Town Centre, but instead only a stop on the edge of the town (County Hotel) and an industrial area. This became more of an issue when service 5 was withdrawn from South Killingholme at the start of the year leaving the village without a timetabled bus to Immingham Town Centre. The revised service only offers the chance to spend either 45 minutes or 2 hours 45 minutes in Immingham Town Centre, but better than no timetabled bus at all (CallConnect is also available if pre-booked and has availability).

The 0940, 1140 and 1340 from Immingham now operate 5 minutes earlier, reducing connection times from service 5. From Brigg the 0930, 1130, 1330, and on Saturdays and School Holidays the 1530, departures now operate 10 minutes earlier. For anyone wanting to connect onto service 5 for Grimsby, you can now arrive at 1134 rather than 1154. Last departure from Grimsby to connect into service 450 remains at 1250 however, so not that much use!

Whilst these changes are positive and welcome, South Killingholme still has a poor timetabled service to it's nearest town, Immingham, and connections to Grimsby are near-useless without using CallConnect in one direction. What could make a difference is if prior to the 0935 departure from Immingham, a South Killingholme to Immingham 'short' was operated, at say 0910 (North Lincolnshire Concessionary Bus Passes don't have a 0930 start time), and on Saturdays and during School Holidays if following the 1452 and 1652 arrivals at Immingham County Hotel, new 'shorts' were provided to South Killingholme, at say 1500 and 1700. This would make a big improvement to the previously mentioned two issues for little extra mileage. If savings need to be made to fund these extras, I do wonder how much usage the 0715 Immingham to Brigg gets on a Saturday, and if it would be cheaper to run out of service from Grimsby depot to Brigg instead, direct via the A180 and A18 as opposed to via Barton?

Afternoon Louth to Grimsby gap filled

Stagecoach made some timetable amendments to Interconnect service 51 between Grimsby, Louth and Mablethorpe from Monday 2nd September. As part of these changes, a previous 95 minute gap in departures from Louth to Grimsby on schooldays between the 1425 51 and 1600 51b schools service has been filled, with the 1440 from Mablethorpe to Louth now running through to Grimsby, departing Louth at 1525, as also occurs during school holidays and on Saturdays.

Saturday 19 October 2019

Cliffsider Retimed

Stagecoach retimed journeys on their 'Cliffsider' service 103 between Scunthorpe, Messingham, Kirton and Lincoln on Monday 2nd September. The service remains approximately every two hours Monday to Saturdays, along with three daytime Scunthorpe to Messingham and return 'shorts'. Most notably the 0645 from Scunthorpe to Lincoln now operates 15 minutes earlier at 0630, and the Messingham to Scunthorpe 'shorts' are now better co-ordinated with the full route 103 journeys. Previously daytime departures from Messingham were at 0938, 1024, 1138, 1224, 1338, 1424 and 1538, but they are now at 0933, 1028, 1133, 1228, 1333, 1428 and 1533. Service 100 departures from Messingham to Scunthorpe are at 8 minutes past the hour however, so the 'perfect' coordination between the 100 and 103 in some hours has been lost, with slightly improved coordination in other hours.

Friday 18 October 2019

Small but useful re-routing in Immingham

On Monday 2nd September, Stagecoach weekday early morning and peak service 5m between Humberston (early morning only), Cleethorpes (early morning only), Grimsby and Immingham had a small but potentially useful route change in Immingham. Between County Hotel and Kings Road, the service now operates via Manby Road, providing improved access to various industrial premises in the area compared to walking from the County Hotel bus stop. Traveline East Midlands shows there are now three additional bus stops served by the 5m. The timetable for service 5m remains unaltered.

Sunday 13 October 2019

Stagecoach 50 Afternoon Changes

Stagecoach service 50 between Grimsby and Saltfleet was amended in the afternoons on Monday 2nd September. The 50 links Grimsby with various villages to the south east of the town, most of which are within the Lincolnshire County Council area. The service operates three times a day on weekdays, and four times a day on Saturdays, though discounting what are essentially in service positioning journeys, the 50 offers two morning journeys into Grimsby, and two afternoon services from Grimsby, providing a basic service for commuters, students and shoppers.

On schooldays the 1435 from Grimsby now additionally serves New Waltham and Holton Le Clay, with a resultant increase in journey time of 18 minutes for those travelling from Grimsby to villages between Tetney and Saltfleet inclusive; a Grimsby to Tetney journey on this particular departure is now timed for 58 minutes, compared to a direct car journey time of 14 minutes according to Google. During school holidays the 1450 departure from Grimsby now operates 8 minutes later at 1458.

Saturday 12 October 2019

The end of the Humber Fastcat's Hull City Centre Loop

East Yorkshire and Stagecoach made some changes to the 350 Humber Fastcat between Hull, Barton and Scunthorpe on Sunday 1st September.

Most notably the peaktime, evening and Sunday journeys now no longer serve the Hull City Centre 'loop' outbound from Hull Paragon Interchange, omitting the Bond Street and Carr Lane stops, as well as the stop opposite the Interchange side entrance on Anlaby Road. Instead all outbound journeys now follow the Monday to Saturday daytime route from Paragon Interchange via Park Street to Anlaby Road, which is also used by the 250 Humber Flyer between Hull, Barton, Grimsby and Cleethorpes.

Stagecoach gave no reason for the change, but East Yorkshire noted it was to give a 'speedier' journey; for example the 1715 from Paragon Interchange used to arrive at Hull Royal Infirmary at 1727 but is now timed for 1718. I also suspect improving punctuality may have been a factor, at least with certain journeys; the previously mentioned 1715 used to arrive at Scunthorpe Bus Station at 1842 but now arrives at 1840, with seven of the nine minutes saved by omitting the Hull City Centre loop 'used up' elsewhere on the route.

On the other hand, this change inconveniences anyone who has been visiting the eastern and central parts of Hull City Centre, such as the Old Town area, Princes Quay or Hull New Theatre; passengers from these areas now have to walk to Paragon Interchange, or catch another service and change at either Paragon Interchange or Hull Royal Infirmary. Most other services in Hull City Centre serve other parts of the City Centre in addition to Paragon Interchange inbound or outbound, or in both directions. Furthermore in some cases changing from a connecting service onto the 350 at Bond Street or Carr Lane enabled an earlier 350 to be caught as opposed to changing at Paragon Interchange; I myself used to be able to get home from Hull University to Barton half an hour earlier a few years ago by changing at Carr Lane.

Overall this is a disappointing change, but if punctuality is a concern then this is a better option than cutting say Winteringham or the Frodingham Road area of Scunthorpe, where the 350 provides the only or main service. Plus for passengers travelling from Paragon Interchange it does speed up journey times.

At the same time the 1640 Monday to Saturday departure from Paragon Interchange has been retimed to 1645, fitting in better between the 1630 and 1700 service 250 departures. On Sundays the departure times from Paragon Interchange have been standardised from 0825, 1025, 1320, 1530, 1830 and 1930 to 0830, 1030, 1330, 1530, 1830 and 1930.

Friday 11 October 2019

Priory Park Park and Ride September Changes

The Priory Park Park and Ride service in Hull, operated by Stagecoach, was slightly amended on Monday 2nd September. It has now gained a number - service 20 (and service 20X for peak time journeys via the A63). Four extra journeys were introduced from Priory Park to the City Centre, at 1855, 1910, 1925 and 1940 Monday to Saturday, presumably to avoid dead mileage. Finally the service now serves all stops en-route, having previously operated non-stop along Hessle Road between Priory Park and Askew Avenue and having served only the Wheeler Street, KC Stadium, Hull Royal Infirmary and Paragon Interchange side entrance stops on Anlaby Road prior to September.

Going by the VOSA website, a major change is due to the Park and Ride service next month, with a re-routing of non-special event journeys via the main Hessle Road shopping area as opposed to Askew Avenue and Boothferry Road. A service 2S is also being introduced between Hull City Centre, the Boothferry Estate and Sainsbury's.

Sunday 6 October 2019

Stagecoach 8 Changes

Stagecoach made some small changes to service 8 in Hull on Monday 2nd September. The service operates in a circle from Paragon Interchange via Beverley Road, Sutton Park, North Point, Salthouse Road and Holderness Road back to Paragon Interchange, and vice versa, every half hour Monday to Saturday daytimes. Some journeys operate as service 8a or 8x variants.

The weekday 0732 8x from Paragon Interchange to North Point via Beverley Road, Clough Road and the Sutton Fields Industrial Estate now operates as a circular back to Paragon Interchange via Salthouse Road, incorporating the previous college holiday only 0807 service 8 from North Point.

Whilst the circular service has been improved in the morning, it is different in the afternoon. The weekday clockwise 1402 circular service 8a from Paragon Interchange becomes a 1402 service 8 terminating at North Point, and the 1532 service 8 circular from Paragon Interchange now terminates at North Point. Whilst sadly not shown in the service 8 timetable, these journeys now appear to continue as service 85, via the service 8 route, from North Point back to Paragon Interchange and onto the Bricknell Estate. As a result however the apparent cut is not a significant as the service 8 timetable indicates. The loss however is that the last 8a variant from North Point to the unique sections of route on Biggin Avenue, Kestrel Avenue and Howdale Road is now at 1337 rather than 1437 Monday to Friday.

In the anti clockwise direction, there are now two hour long gaps on weekdays in the service 8 timetable, between 1405 and 1505 from Paragon Interchange, and again between 1535 and 1635 (the latter had existed on college days previously). There are journeys however on service 83 from Paragon Interchange at 1430 and 1600 which operate to Salthouse Road, North Point and Sutton Park on the service 8 route before serving Orchard Park and Cottingham; again sadly these journeys are not shown on the service 8 timetable despite going a long way to fill the gaps in service 8. Whilst being aimed at Wilberforce College students, the 83, and 85 mentioned earlier, appear to operate during college holidays as well.

Times of other journeys were also amended by up to 5 minutes, especially in the anti clockwise direction.