Sunday 24 November 2019

Stagecoach West Hull Changes

Stagecoach made some major changes to their West Hull services on Sunday 3rd November.

Services 1 and 2 link Paragon Interchange in the City Centre with the Boothferry Estate, the 1 operating via the Thornton Estate and Hessle Road, the 2 operating via Hull Royal Infirmary, Anlaby Road and Anlaby Park Road North. The two services operate as 'through' services across the Boothferry Estate, making journeys such as Anlaby Park Road North to Hessle Road possible without a change. Services 1 and 2 had been operating every 10 minutes Monday to Friday daytimes and every 15 minutes on Saturday daytimes, however this has now been reduced to every 15 minutes Monday to Friday and every 20 minutes on Saturdays. The first Monday to Friday departure on service 1 from Paragon Interchange is now at 0435 rather than 0505, and on service 2 at 0430 rather than 0515.

However at the same time as cutting the 1 and 2's frequencies, new service 2s has been started, operating the same route as service 2 between Paragon Interchange and the Boothferry Estate, before continuing the short distance to Hessle Sainsbury's. The 2s operates every 15 minutes Monday to Friday daytimes (with some longer gaps on schooldays afternoons) and every 20 minutes on a Saturday daytime. Combined the 2 and 2s now operate every 7-8 minutes Monday to Friday daytime and every 10 minutes on a Saturday daytime, an extra two services per hour compared to the previous service 2 timetable. The remaining 'through' service 1 and 2's are probably still frequent enough for any 'through' traffic.

Also impacted by the changes was Priory Park Park and Ride service 20. Apart from some 20x peaktime journeys via the A63, the Park and Ride service had routed from Priory Park via Hessle Road as far as Gipsyville, then via Askew Avenue, Fiveways, Boothferry Road, Anlaby Road and Hull Royal Infirmary into Hull City Centre. Now service 20 has been rerouted between Gipsyville and Hull Royal Infirmary via the main Hessle Road Shopping Area and Rawling Way. The Park and Ride continues to operate every 15 minutes Monday to Saturday daytime, and the re-routing provides an increase in services along the main Hessle Road Shopping Area, even after allowing for the cutback to service 1; Monday to Friday there are now eight Stagecoach services an hour in each direction, and on Saturday seven.

The changes to the 1 and 20 aren't quite as positive as the 2 and 2s. The Thornton Estate does not get any new services to supplement the reduction in frequency on service 1, and there is no replacement for service 20 on Boothferry Road between Fiveways and Anlaby Road, not that this section is lacking in buses - services 66, 155, X55, 250 & 350 also operate along here. Most notable however is the impact on Askew Avenue. Technically it's not totally 'bus-less'; in addition to some schools and college services, the 1800 to 1930 inclusive Park and Ride departures from Priory Park operate via the 'old' service 20 route as new service number 22, I presume to serve evening football and rugby matches at the KCom Stadium without the need to amend service 20. However a one-way early evening service isn't much of a service for Askew Avenue. I had wondered if Hull City Council would re-route the tendered 51 via Askew Avenue again, but so far they haven't. The northern and southern parts of Askew Avenue are within walking distance of Boothferry Road and Hessle Road respectively where alternative services are available.

Without a doubt some positives here, but a couple of negatives too.

Saturday 23 November 2019

Services 5 and 11 mostly improved

On Sunday 3rd November, Stagecoach amended Hull Paragon Interchange to Kingswood Retail Park services 5 and 11, and the changes mostly provide an improved service.

The biggest changes have been to service 5 which operates via the Avenues, including serving Hull University, and Orchard Park. Previously the Monday to Saturday daytime pattern had been a service every 20 minutes over the full route and a service every 20 minutes between Paragon Interchange and Orchard Park Tesco, giving a combined every 10 minute frequency over most of the route. This has now been amended to increase the 'full route' frequency to Kingswood to every 15 minutes, with 'short' journeys also running every 15 minutes between Paragon Interchange and Orchard Park Medical Centre. Overall the service between Paragon Interchange and Orchard Park Medical Centre is now every 7-8 minutes, an extra two services per hour. The only negative is the reduction from every 10 to every 15 minutes over the short section between Orchard Park Medical Centre and Orchard Park Tesco, though every 15 minutes is still frequent and services 3 and 4 are also available to passengers on this stretch of route. Morning peak 'shorts' still start at Orchard Park Tesco however, and some 'shorts' do not operate on schooldays.

The Monday to Saturday evening provision has also been revised. Service 5 continues to operate every half hour, with the final service from Hull City Centre now starting at Paragon Interchange rather than in the Old Town. Inglemire Lane variant u5 is more substantially amended. Previously the u5 had operated every half hour early evenings between Paragon Interchange and Kingswood, giving a combined 15 minute frequency with service 5 over common sections. Now these early evening journeys have been truncated to operate between Paragon Interchange and Orchard Park Medical Centre only, reducing the early evening frequency between Orchard Park and Kingswood from every 15 minutes to half hourly. On the positive side however, these u5 'shorts' now continue all evening Friday and Saturday, doubling the frequency over the common sections of route with service 5. Going by the Stagecoach route map, the u5 has also been re-routed between the Hall Road/Endike Lane/Greenwood Avenue junction and the Hall Road/Orchard Park Road junction; instead of routing 'direct' via Hall Road, which is also served by the 3, the u5 now operates along the otherwise unserved western part of Greenwood Avenue before resuming the main service 5 route along Ellerburn Avenue.

The Sunday daytime service 5 timetable has been halfed between Orchard Park Tesco and Kingswood; rather than a 15 minute service across the full route, alternate journeys now operate between Paragon Interchange and Orchard Park Tesco only.

Service 11 (including the 11a variant) which operates via Holderness Road, Bellfield Avenue, Spring Cottage and North Point Shopping Centre, has a revised timetable but the only significant frequency change is the increase of Sunday evening services from hourly to half hourly.

Service 5 and services 11/11a also now operate as 'through' services at Kingswood Retail Park and Paragon Intechange on many journeys. Be aware however at Paragon Interchange it appears to sometimes be the Orchard Park 'shorts' on service 5 that operate as a through route with service 11 at Paragon Interchange, so it's not always a full 'circular' service being provided.. Even allowing for this, there are additional journeys now possible without a change of bus, such as between Holderness Road and the Avenues, or Orchard Park to Bransholme on weekends.

Friday 22 November 2019

East Yorkshire York Changes

East Yorkshire amended York services 45, 46 and X47 on Monday 30th September. Service 45 links Bridlington, Driffield, Market Weighton, Pocklington and York, service 46 connects Holme on Spalding Moor, Market Weighton, Pocklington and York whilst service X47 operates between Hull, Beverley, Market Weighton, Pocklington and York.

Previously between Kexby Bridge and York, service 45 (including the 45A variant) had operated via Dunnington and on service 46 most services operated via the University of York. From either Hull Road or the University into York City Centre, both routes served Lawrence Street and Piccadilly en-route to their Station Road terminus. However since late September the 45 and 46 now have a new route, with the same route being used for both services. 

Firstly both services now serve the University of York but not the village of Dunnington, which East Yorkshire no longer serve. This increases the frequency between the University, Pocklington and Market Weighton from every two hours Monday to Saturday daytime plus peak time extras, to hourly. The evening peak 46A variant which served Dunnington becomes a standard 46, simplifying the service. It does however result in the loss of the Dunnington to Pocklington link, and the end of daytime buses along Common Lane in Dunnington. Dunnington's main service is First York route 10. 

The other change is to the route within York, with Lawrence Street and Piccadilly now omitted. Instead the 45 and 46 operate via Melrosegate to Heworth and then serve East Parade, Layerthorpe and Stonebow in York City Centre, before continuing to terminate at Station Road. The new route increases journey times by 5 minutes off peak, and mean that the 45/46 have different picking up points east of the River Ouse in York City Centre compared to the other main Market Weighton-Pocklington-York service, route X46. However it does provide access to different parts of York, and provides a link between the University and Heworth. There is overlap with First services 6 and 11, Transdev operated tendered service 25, and Transdev's Coastliner service, for local travel into York on the new route.

A small number of 45 and 46 journeys haven't transitioned to the new route, and have instead become service X47 'short' journeys, still serving Lawrence Street and Piccadilly in York. Early mornings, the 0555 Mon-Fri and 0625 Sat from Pocklington to York, which were already following the X47 route not serving either Dunnington or the University of York, adopt the X47 number. In the evening, the Mon-Sat 2020 and Fri+Sat 2220 service 46's from Pocklington to York, become X47's, as do the Mon-Sat 2105 and Fri+Sat 2305 45's from York to Pocklington. As a result of becoming X47's, these evening journeys now serve York Station as opposed to nearby Station Road, a small enhancement for anyone connecting from a rail service. 

Sunday 17 November 2019

East Yorkshire University, Avenues and Cottingham Changes

On Sunday 1st September, East Yorkshire made some significant changes to their services in the Avenues and University area of Hull, and in Cottingham - in part due to the closure of the University of Hull's The Lawns Halls of Residence in Cottingham, and their replacement with new accommodation around Inglemire Lane in Hull.

The impact of the student accommodation move has been most profound on service 103. This route had linked Hull Paragon Interchange and The Lawns via Princes Avenue, Newland Avenue, Cottingham Road and Cottingham Green, operating every 20 minutes Monday to Saturday daytime and every hour Monday to Saturday evening and Sunday daytime. Now it operates from Paragon Interchange via Princes Avenue and Newland Avenue before performing a one-way loop of Cranbrook Avenue, Inglemire Lane, Hall Road and Cottingham Road, then back into Paragon Interchange via Newland Avenue and Princes Avenue. The 103 continues to operate every 20 minutes Monday to Saturday daytimes but has been increased to half hourly Monday to Saturday evenings and Sunday daytimes.

Prior to September, Inglemire Lane only had Monday to Saturday early evening buses on Stagecoach service U5; Stagecoach had earlier attempted a daytime service with service 9. Whilst this change is clearly good news for Inglemire Lane and Hall Road, it does represent a reduction in services from Cottingham to both Hull City Centre and the Avenues - although as noted above, must be seen in the context of the The Lawns closure.

Nightbus 106S, a solitary inbound journey to Hull City Centre, operating on Saturdays during university terms only, has also been amended to start on Inglemire Lane rather than The Lawns. Nightbus 106, which operates from Hull City Centre via the University to Cottingham year round, is unchanged. Nightbus 107, which operates from Hull University Asylum nightclub on Wednesday night/Thursday morning during term times no longer operates to the The Lawns, but instead operates down Cranbrook Avenue to then provide a 'one-way' loop via Newland Avenue, Princes Avenue, Spring Bank, Beverley Road and Cottingham Road back to Cranbrook Avenue and Asylum. This new route serves various bars and clubs as well as student housing.

'Sister' service to the 103, service 105 between Hull Paragon Interchange, Beverley Road, Cottingham Road and Cottingham has been diverted in Cottingham from The Lawns to Castle Hill Hospital, operating via St Margaret's Avenue. This provides new connectivity to Castle Hill Hospital from Beverley Road and Cottingham Road in Hull, and restores bus service to St Margaret's Avenue for the first time since Stagecoach removed the western half of service 9. The 105 continues to operate every 20 minutes Monday to Saturday daytimes, half hourly Monday to Saturday evenings and hourly on Sunday evenings, but has been increased from hourly to half hourly Sunday daytimes, which compensates for the loss of the Sunday 103 to Cottingham.

When Cottingham services were reorganised in the mid-00's, the service number 115 made a lot of sense. The route ran between Paragon Interchange, Endike Lane, Cottingham and Castle Hill Hospital via Princes Avenue, Newland Avenue and Cranbrook Avenue, where the other main route was the Stagecoach 15. Since the introduction of Simplibus, the 15 became the 5, and East Yorkshire using the 115 number has been less logical. East Yorkshire used September's changes to renumber the 115 to the 104, fitting in neatly between the 103 that also serves the Avenues, and the 105 that also serves Cottingham. The 104 number also links in better with the 154, with which it operates as a 'cross-Castle Hill Hospital' circular.

As part of East Yorkshire's wider initiative to improve early morning services in the Hull area, the first departure from Paragon Interchange Monday to Friday on the 104 is now at 0530 compared to 0600 on the 115. From Castle Hill Hospital there are extra journeys at 0533, 0603 and 0633 to Paragon Interchange, the later also replacing a short 0645 from Endike Lane into Paragon Interchange. Previously the first 115 from Castle Hill Hospital was at 0653.

On the negative side the Monday to Saturday evening 'shorts' between Paragon Interchange and Endike Lane have been withdrawn. The enhanced frequency on service 103 replaces these in the Avenues area, but the last service from Paragon Interchange to Endike Lane is now at 1950 rather than 2330, and from Endike Lane to Paragon Interchange at 2057 rather than 2257.

Service 154 between Paragon Interchange, Hull Royal Infirmary, Anlaby Road, Springfield Way, Willerby and Castle Hill Hospital also receives early morning improvements Monday to Friday, with new journeys from Paragon Interchange at 0520 and 0550, previous first journey at 0610, and from Castle Hill at 0541 and 0611, previous first journey at 0641.

The other main service between Hull and Cottingham is the 63. The 63 had been operating Monday to Saturday daytimes every 15 minutes between Paragon Interchange, Hull Royal Infirmary, Anlaby Road and Priory Road before alternate buses operated to Ledbury Road (just off Priory Road) and alternate buses continued to Castle Hill Hospital via Cottingham Green. Every hour services further continued to Beverley via Skidby, Little Weighton and Walkington. Since September this has been rationalised to a service every 20 minutes between Paragon Interchange and Castle Hill Hospital.

There are two main negative impacts, and one main positive impact. On the positive side this is an extra service per hour to Cottingham, which partially compensates for the loss of the 103. On the negative side is the end of buses to Ledbury Road, which East Yorkshire put down to "parking issues mean buses are having difficulty getting around the smaller estate roads". Also on the negative side is the impact on Skidby, Little Weighton and Walkington. 

These villages are not 'cut-off' as service 180 has been brought back a partial replacement. The 180 was a long standing Hessle to Beverley service via Skidby, Little Weighton and Walkington that was replaced by faster service 80 omitting the three villages, and the 63 extension to Beverley. The 'new' 180 operates between Castle Hill Hospital, Southwood Road, Cottingham, 
Skidby, Little Weighton, Walkington and Beverley on a reduced frequency compared to the 63 and without the through service to Hull. The original 'new' service 180 timetable had departures from Cottingham Green to Beverley at 0745 and 0930, and from Castle Hill Hospital to Beverley at 1048, 1218 and 1348 (departing Cottingham Green at 1100, 1230 and 1400). In the opposite direction, the 180 left Beverley for Castle Hill via Cottingham at 1010, 1140 and 1310, and departed Beverley as far as Cottingham Green only at 1440, 1550 and 1700. With a first arrival in Cottingham at 1043 and last return at 1400, this timetable was not much use for shopping trips into Hull City Centre with a change of bus in Cottingham, though did provide basic commuting and shopping links to Beverley and shopping links to Cottingham.

Since Monday 11th November the 180 has seen two changes. There is a new 1630 from Cottingham Green to Beverley, which makes a Walkington/Little Weighton/Skidby to Hull City Centre round-trip with a change of bus in Cottingham more realistic, and the 1700 from Beverley is retimed to 1715 "to make it easier for commuters to catch the bus after work".

Returning to the 63, there is a new 0610 from Paragon Interchange to Castle Hill Hospital on Saturdays; previously the first journey was at 0715. In the opposite direction the first Saturday service from Castle Hill Hospital is now at 0648 rather than 0740.

As a final note - this is not a new quirk, but the Saturday evening service from Hull City Centre to The Parkway and Burton Road in Cottingham, has a large gap between the 1950 service 104 from Paragon Interchange and the 2330 service 106 from Hull Old Town. There are then further service 106's at 0030, 0130 and 0225. Unusual for somewhere to have a daytime, early evening and 'full' nightbus service (i.e. not just the 2330 departure) but a 3 hour 40 minute gap mid/late evening. 

Saturday 16 November 2019

Service 88 Goes Five Days A Week

Service 88 between Goole, Airmyn, Rawcliffe and Rawcliffe Bridge was substantially improved from Monday 2nd September. The service is operated by East Yorkshire for East Riding of Yorkshire Council. It had been operating Monday, Wednesday and Friday only, with one journey from Rawcliffe Bridge at 0930, returning from Goole at 1230. Now the 88 operates Monday to Friday, with three journeys in each direction, departing Goole at 0905, 1205 and 1505, returning from Rawcliffe Bridge at 0930, 1230 and 1530.

Monday 11 November 2019

Swinefleet 'Shorts' withdrawn

From Monday 2nd September, the two weekday 'short' journeys on subsidised East Yorkshire service 360 between Swinefleet and Goole were withdrawn. In the morning, the 0715 from Swinefleet no longer operates, with the first service from Swinefleet into Goole now at 0819. In the evening, the 1835 from Goole to Swinefleet no longer operates, with the last service from Goole at 1725.

In addition other minor timing changes were made to service 360 and associated service 361, which together link Scunthorpe, Luddington, Swinefleet and Goole, the 360 operating via Amcotts and the 361 via Crowle.

Sunday 10 November 2019

Hull to Willerby Improvements

East Yorkshire improved their Hull to Willerby services 34 and 44 from Sunday 1st September.

The Monday to Friday 0722 service 44 from Willerby Square to Hull Paragon Interchange now starts at Willerby Parkway at 0715, providing a first service from Willerby Parkway into Hull City Centre via Willerby Road and Spring Bank one hour earlier than previously available. Similarly, on Saturdays the 0757 service 44 from Willerby Square to Paragon Interchange now starts at Willerby Parkway at 0750, 53 minutes earlier than previously available.

On Sunday daytimes the frequency of service 34 has been doubled from hourly to half hourly.

Saturday 9 November 2019

Service 56 & 57 Weekday Morning Enhancements

From Monday 2nd September, East Yorkshire made some Monday to Friday morning improvements to Hull area services 56 and 57, which link Asda Bilton, Longhill, Holderness Road and Hull City Centre, before the 57 continues to/from Hull Royal Infirmary, Hessle Road and Hessle Square.

The 0600 service 56 from Paragon Interchange to Asda Bilton now operates as a service 57, starting back in Hessle at 0530, 45 minutes before the previous first 57 from Hessle at 0615. In the other direction, extra morning peak services have been added from Asda Bilton into Hull City Centre. Between the 0701 service 57 departure and the 0843 service 56 departure inclusive, the number of services into Hull City Centre has improved from ten to twelve, with two extra service 56's providing the increase.

Saturday 2 November 2019

Hessle Town Service Passes to East Yorkshire

Operation of the Friday Only Hessle Town Service 183 passed from Acklams Coaches to East Yorkshire, with effect from Friday 6th September. Other than the change of operator, the main change is the diversion of the service to serve Hessle Square in the Town Centre for an additional time, in between serving Tranby Avenue and Darleys Roundabout. This reduces journey times from western Hessle to Hessle Town Centre, as it removes the need to travel via Sainsbury's, and also cuts travel times from Hessle Town Centre to eastern Hessle, removing the need to travel via the western part of the town first. On the other hand it does increase journey times slightly from western Hessle to Sainsbury's. and from Sainsbury's back to Beverley Road, Boothferry Road and First Lane. There have also been minor amendments to the timetable.