Monday 22 April 2024

New Spurn Explorer

A new Summer Saturday link from Hull to Spurn Point commenced on 23rd March - the East Yorkshire operated Spurn Explorer. It is numbered as either service 71 or service 71E depending on where you look. I suspect the 'E' maybe an internal East Yorkshire suffix to differentiate from the main service 71 between Withernsea and Easington? The Spurn Explorer has been funded from East Riding of Yorkshire Council's Bus Service Improvement Plan Plus funding allocation. It is due to operate until 3rd November.

The new Spurn Explorer operates from Hull to Patrington largely via the service 75 route - including the Burstwick diversion - with the intriguing exception that it uses Preston Road and Marfleet Lane rather than Southcoates Lane. Logical, as it serves more residential areas, but intriguing as the southern section of Marfleet Lane is otherwise unserved, except for school/college buses.

After Patrington, the Spurn Explorer follows the main 71 route to Easington Village and Caravan Park before extending to Kilnsea Village and the Spurn Discovery Centre.

The Spurn Explorer timetable only has one full route journey from Hull to Spurn, leaving Hull at 0825, returning from Spurn at 1625. Otherwise there are two Patrington to Spurn 'shorts', designed to connect with either service X7 or 75 from Hull at Patrington. Finally at lunchtime there is a Spurn-Patrington-Withernsea and return service - that is also timed for Hull connections at Patrington - presumably to allow the driver to take a break at Withernsea?

Co-ordination with the main service 71 between Withernsea, Patrington and Easington isn't fantastic, but the timetable seems to be designed around Hull connections, which is understandable as the intent is to serve visitors to Spurn rather than local demand.

The following Sunday - 24th March - saw the commencement of the expected seasonal extension of the main service 71 between Withernsea and Easington to Spurn on Sundays and Bank Holidays only.

There are a couple of interesting articles about the Spurn Explorer - and the attraction of Spurn Point - on the East Yorkshire website here and here.

Sunday 21 April 2024

Bridlington Park and Ride passes to East Yorkshire

East Yorkshire Buses have taken over operation of the tendered Summer Only Bridlington Park and Ride this year, with the season having commenced on Saturday 23rd March. Previously operated by Stagecoach as their service 88, it is now numbered 520. 

Presumably this will mean no Stagecoach 99 from Hull to Bridlington this year; the route commenced when they won the Park and Ride contract as a 'positioning' service, albeit with some journeys at useful times for a daytrip to Bridlington.

Monday 1 April 2024

New Wolds Explorer

The service 4 extension to Normanby Hall wasn't the only seasonal leisure service to start on Easter Saturday (30th March). The East Yorkshire operated service 200 'Wolds Explorer' also commenced. The 200 operates between Pocklington, Millington, Huggate, Fridaythorpe and Thixendale every Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holiday until the end of September. It is funded from East Riding of Yorkshire Council's Bus Service Improvement Plan Plus allocation.

The Saturday timetable has departures from Pocklington at 1010, 1330 and 1530, returning from Thixendale at 1105, 1430 and 1630. On Sundays and Bank Holidays the 200 departs Pocklington at 1120 and 1520, returning from Thixendale at 1215 and 1615.

One interesting feature of the 200 is that customers with a ticket for the X46/X47 between Hull, Pocklington and York can travel for free on the 200.

Whilst the 200 is intended to serve visitors to the Yorkshire Wolds - including walkers - it may also have some use for villagers travelling into Pocklington. Millington and Thixendale are otherwise unserved by bus services. Huggate has the 199 into Pocklington, but only on a Tuesday, whilst Fridaythorpe has the Tuesday and Thursday 535 to Driffield, but no other weekend or Pocklington services.

Finally, if this service sounds vaguely familiar - it is. My August 2002 East Riding timetable book includes a Summer service W1 between Pocklington and Thixendale, but also extending to Sledmere and Wharram Percy. It operated on Sundays and Bank Holidays from late March until the end of September and Tuesdays in the North Yorkshire School Summer Holidays. The W1 was operated by EYMS, the brand used by East Yorkshire at the time.