Monday, 30 May 2011

Trip to Stoke 30-05-2011


64Trentham Road, Magdalen RoadLongton Transport Interchange22Scraggs
61237Longton Transport InterchangeDuke Street, Fenton6BFirst Potteries
60004Duke Street, FentonChurch Street, Stoke26First Potteries

Matthew returned home from respite care at dinner time, and I knew he would be interested in going out on the #22 service. The bank holiday and Sunday service has been taken over by Scraggs Blue Buses, and this had started the day before. Yesterday I went out to get a photograph of the first running, and today I went out to see what had worked on the second run. both days had produced Scraggs Blue Buses 64 which Matthew had not been on before. It had been raining all day and was forecast to stop around teatime. I took him out as planned, with the intention of catching the bus to Longton and then returning straight away. We walked the short distance to the Trentham road stop and waited for the bus to turn up. After a few minutes,we saw the Blue step entranced minibus appear in the distance. I hindsight we should have gone to the next stop as the bus emerged out of the sun and made it difficult for Matthew to get a good photograph.

Scraggs Blue Buses 64 on a Newcastle to Longton Service (Matt)

We boarded the bus which was half full. Shortly after boarding we followed 40138 through Blurton as it headed towards Hanley on a #23 service. People were talking about the service, and I think it can be said that everyone is willing that the new 'trial' service is a commercial success and that Scraggs continue to run it. When we got to Longton, Matthew photographed the empty inside of the bus.

Inside Scraggs 64, showing it's ex Arriva Interior (Matt)

When we got off, I was hoping that Matthew would get straight back on but he had different ideas,
He did get a much better shot of the bus as it left Longton Transport interchange though.

Scraggs Blue Buses 64 Departs for Newcastle (Matt) we got to plan B... I thought we could catch a bus to Fenton and then catch one back. We could then catch the return Scraggs bus back homewards. The next bus in was a 6B to Hanley and Matthew indicated that he wanted to catch it.

61237 pulls into Longton Transport Interchange on the #6B to Hanley (Matt)

On the way towards Fenton we passed 61143 coming the other way, we also passed 61160. After this short run we got off. The timetable indicted a 20 frequency towards Hanley, which I thought was good for a Sunday evening. There was also an hourly 26 to Stoke. We then decided that perhaps the best thing to do was to go to Stoke and then maybe catch a bus to Blurton from Stoke. According to the timetable board, the 26 Newcastle and the 6B Hanley were due at the same time. First bus to turn up was the 6B which was 60057.

60057 on the following 6B Hanley (Matt)

It then occurred to me that maybe the board hadn't been changed. I looked at the date at the bottom and it said from February 2011... That was the last change! We then saw 61237 across the road returning from Hanley.

61237 heading back towards Longton on a #6B (Matt)

I texted the 84268 service to see when the next bus was due, the service retuned a load of 6B's and nothing else... Oh...perhaps the bus doesn't run the late... I was just considering crossing the road and waitng for 60057 to go back to Longton, when a 26 Newcastle turned up about 7 late. I now know the bus does still run and wasn't affected by the timetable change...The bus turns up and it'ts 60004, now the lowest numbered single decker in the First Fleet that is still running. We did this bus to Church Street, Stoke.

60004 on arrival in Stoke on a #26 to Newcastle (Matt)

We we got to Stoke Matthew decided he was staying put for a short while. I tried to give him alternatives for going home, he could either catch a 21 or a 23. but he just wanted to stay put. At that point mum called to see if we were OK. I asked Matthew if he wanted to go home in the car or bus and he chose car??!! So mum set off and we had around 15 minutes in Stoke watching buses. Amongst others 40138 turned up on a #23 Blurton - Hanley

40138 on a 23 to Hanley (Matt)

Eventually mum turned up and we returned home via Trent Vale and Trentham. Matthew insisted we called at the One Stop Shop on the Lea and he purchased some biscuits. As we travelled along Trentham Road we passed Scraggs 64 on a Newcastle bound 22. Had we gone back to Longton and caught the 22 bus, we wouldn't have got home much earlier.... Mark

Saturday, 28 May 2011

Trip to Hanley 28-05-2011


40170WolstantonHanley BS17First Potteries
40150Hanley BSNewcastle BS34First Potteries
40136Newcastle BSWolstanton99First Potteries
40149WolstantonNewcastle BS98First Potteries
41Newcastle BSCrewe BS85D & G
3360Crewe BSSandbach Common38Arriva NW&W
3353Sandbach CommonCrewe BS38Arriva NW&W
7647CreweNantwich BS84Arriva NW&W
2500Nantwich BSCrewe BS84Arriva NW&W
138Crewe BSNewcastle BS85D & G

Matthew was in respite and the above is the move he did on Saturday whilst in their care.

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Trip to Bury 21-05-2011


34029Bury BSUnsworth, Parr Lane/Unsworth Pole (SW-bound)‎93First Manchester
60273Unsworth, Kennedy Drive/Parr Lane (nr House 2)Bury BS137First Manchester
40343Bury BSWalshaw War Memorial510First Manchester
40347Walshaw War MemorialBury BS510First Manchester
34069Bury BSManchester Road, Dumers lane (Stop B)524First Manchester
34263Manchester Road, Dumers lane (Stop A)Bury BS524First Manchester

We asked Matthew last weekend where he would like to go this weekend and he chose Bury. Planning for this trip consisted of packing the Map and timetables we had picked up on previous trip and to take some sausage rolls with us! we set off just after 12:00 and arrived in Bury around 13:20 and we parked near to the Library. Walking towards or dinner destination we saw 40343 which we knew was required on a 510 Bolton. We ate in the Haymarket chip restaurant as per usual, and Matthew had Chips jumbo sausage and gravy with 2 rounds of bread and butter, the rest of us had pies peas and gravy. After dinner we walked to the bus station an immediately had a bit of selection problem. There were 3 First Manchester NC double deckers in and I couldn't remember which ones we had been on before! 34019 was on a 137, 34069 arrived on a 524 and 34029 was on a 93. I was convinced that we need 34019 & and 069. Matthew steered us towards 34069 but then the driver went for a break.

34069 between duties on service #524 (Matt)

I was thinking that we should do 34019 on a 137 before we could go for it, it was already leaving.

34019 departs Bury bus station (Matt)

That left 34029 on a service we had never done before. the destination blind was saying the bus was via Unsworth, so I was sure we could do something on this bus and possibly come back on a 137 which seem to produce quite a few NC double deckers. We got on the bus and booked to Unsworth.

Inside 34029 (Matt)

As we left bury bus station, 34262 came in on a 137. I got out my Bury area bus map and saw that the 137 and 93 share a route along Parr Lane. We got off at the point where the 2 route meet going South towards Manchester,

34029 departs Parr Lane, Unworth for Manchester on a service #93(Matt)

There was a co-operative food shop which Matthew visited and photographed. As we walked south looking for a stop to return to Bury, we realised there was no stop on the part of the road the two routes share going towards Bury. As we got to the junction Mercedes bus 60258 went towards Bury on a 93. At this point we decided to go onto Kennedy Drive to catch a 137. After a few minutes 34262 came around the corner from Bury going towards Manchester.

34262 on a 137 to Manchester in Kennedy Drive (Matt)

Another few minutes past and disappointingly 60273 turned up on the 137 to Bury.

60273 in Bury bus station (Matt)

Not only was this a Mercedes, but it was one of the 2 of this type that he had already travelled on! Never mind... As we were travelling back to Bury, I worked out that if we could get back to bury for 14:55, we could do the next #510 to Walshaw. We arrived back with a couple of minutes to spare and 40343 which we had already seen earlier was on stand. After a bit of kerfuffle with Matthew trying to say hello to someone, we got on the bus. It was quite full for a 510, and as he didn't get time to take a picture at Bury, I made sure he got a good picture in Walshaw.

40343 in Walshaw (Matt)

As always we didn't have to wait long for the return which was another P--- LND bus 40347. He didn't get a good shot at Walshaw, but he did photograph the empty bus when we returned to Bury.

Inside 40347 (Matt)

On getting back we were not sure what to do. We could head towards Unsworth and try to pick up one of the double deckers we saw earlier or we could maybe go to Radcliffe or to Walshaw on a Easyride bus. First bus in was 34260 on a 137, we decided not to do this,

34260 in Bury bus station on a #137 to Manchester (Matt)

There was also Ex Rock Ferry bus 61141 on a 98, and then 34069 returned from working a 524 to Bolton. On arrival the driver went on break. We decided to wait and eventually a new driver turned up. As we didn't have loads of time, we decide to do this onto the Manchester Road and then wait up to 15 minutes to catch something back. We did the bus down the A56 and just as it turned towards Radcliffe we got off.

34069 disappears towards Radcliffe on a #524 to Bolton (Matt)

On the way down we passed a Mercedes single decker going the other way so we thought the 524 would be out of the way. We walked around the corner to the bus stop on the A56. With services 93,135,137 and 524 all going past towards Bury we didn't think we would have to wait long for a bus. We saw several buses heading South including Ex Rock ferry bus 61141. Eventually the next bus that turned up was a 524. A double decker appeared to the side of the road about to turn into the A56. The bus turned out to be dud 34263.

34263 on a service #524 to Bury (Matt)

We did this short run back to Bury and then Matthew photographed the empty lower deck as we left the bus.

Inside 34263 (Matt)

We then had a few minutes in the bus station taking picture before we met uo with mum. Matthew took a picture of the departing 34263. Also seen in this period were 60184 and 60338 on Ramsbottom circulars, and 34291 and 34294 on 98 Manchester buses.

60184 in Bury bus station (Matt)

After we met up with mum, we retired to the car for the sausage rolls that we had brought with us. The drive home was fairly uneventful and we filled up with LPG in Longport... (Mark)

Monday, 16 May 2011

Trip to Heron Cross 16-05-2011

Bus From To Service Operator

T408 JUX Blurton Abbey Hulton Charter Z carz
S973 OVP Abbey Hulton Blurton Charter Z carz
3 Blurton, Magdalen Road Blurton, Longton Hall Road (opp) 22 D&G
40751 Blurton, Longton Hall Road (opp) Blurton, Highfield Drive (adj) 23 First Potteries
40383 Blurton, Highfield Drive (opp) Newstead, Shepley Grove (adj) 23A First Potteries

Matthew did his usual transport T408 JUX to College and had the rarer VW bus S973 OVP for his return.

The Internet was going a little slow tonight, so after tea I asked Matthew if he fancied a quick trip out. The D&G 22 will be finished by the end of May, so I thought it would be a good opportunity for Matthew to get in another D&G Solo nearby before the end. We took the long walk to the Magdalen Road stop and Waited for the bus. Within a few minutes D&G 3 appeared from around the corner.

D&G Optare Solo 3 on tonight 22 Newcastle - Longton (Matt)

After the Short trip to the Bottom of Blurton Road, we got off and Matthew took another picture of this fine beast,

D&G 3 disappears towards Longton (Matt)

When we got off I realised that we were in front of the similarly timed 23 to Hanley, so I worked out we could do this to the top of Heron Cross. A very short while later Ex first Glasgow UVG 40751 appeared.

My First UVG... First PMT 40751 on a 23 Hanley (Matt)

These buses having arrived from Glasgow around August 2009, Matthew has had to waited nearly 21 months to ride on his first UVG bus. Inside was nice neat and the seats were quite plush and soft. We did it to the Highfield Drive stop and then crossed the road. After a very short wait 40383 turned up on the 23A to Newstead. This bus was quite full and it would have been very full had this turn been a Solo tonight. The bus emptied out stop by stop and by the time we got to Shepley Grove we were the only ones left on. As we got off Matthew took a picture of the inside.

Inside Ex First Manchester 40383 on a 23A to Newstead (Matt)

Matthew didn't get a very good picture of the bus driving away as it was starting to go dark. we then took the short walk home. (Mark)

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Trip to Talke 15-05-2011


6008Hanley BSNewcastle BS164Arriva Midlands
40305Newcastle BSClayton72First Potteries
40305ClaytonNewcastle BS72First Potteries
40018Trentham Road, Magdalen RoadLongton Hall Road, Adj Surgery22First Potteries
40023Blurton, Longton Hall Road (adj)‎Blurton, Ladybank Grove (adj)23AFirst Potteries

Originally, we were due to take Matthew out locally on the Saturday, but due to a few things happening this did not work out. So we promised to take him out for dinner and then catch a few buses. The original plan was to drive to Talke, have dinner at the Swan Inn and then catch 2 or 3 buses towards home. I worked out a move to get a 34A to Hanley, back to Newcastle on a soon to be defunct 17A and then a 22 whilst it's still PMT on a Sunday. I went out at around 11:45 for a short walk and I saw that 40018 was on the 22 diagram today. The 34A leaves the Swann Inn at Talke at 25 past the hour, so I worked out if we left home at 13:00 and drove to Talke, we would have an hour to order and eat. Leaving home at 13:00 we arrived in the pub car park at around 13:20. We orderer our meals (3 Sunday roasts) and sat down to wait. The 13:25 was 65732 which we saw stop virtually opposite the pub on Chester Road. 45 minutes pasts and the meals weren't ready. We then saw 60208 on the nearside heading towards Kidsgrove. Before we knew it 60013 went past on the 14:25 and we knew we were not going to get that bus today. Shortly after the bus went passed the meals arrived! The meals were very nice but had taken over an hour! After we had finished eating, we decided that maybe we could catch up with 60013 and then doing this back to Newcastle we could miss doing the 17A today and just the 22 from Newcastle. We set off down Coalpit Hill and then onto the A34 and then the A500. We came into Hanley via the A53 and then onto the new section of the ring road. At the junction of Clough Street and the ring road we saw 60013 pull ahead of us, and then it disappeared up Broad Steet. We carried on round the ring road and then around the outside of the bus station parking on Percy Street. As we pulled up we could see an Arriva Midlands Solo on stand about to work a 164 to Market Drayton. Matthew took a picture and we waited for 60013 to appear.

Arriva Midlands Solo 6008 about to work the 164 to Market Drayton. (Matt)

When 60013 pulled up, it went on stand to work a 20 to Crewe. I didn't realise that the diagrams for the 34A and 20 were integrated! So I needed to find a bus back to Newcastle to get the 22. Matthew suggested the 164 and it was a good idea. So we got on the 164 and did this to Newcastle. Unbeknown at the time, we had already been on 6008 in Shrewsbury back in January 2010. As Harry Hill often says "What are the chances of that happening!".

6008 departs Newcastle for Market Drayton (Matt)

After we got off, Matthew took a picture of D&G 28 which had failed in the bus station whilst working a 94A. In attendance was D&G support vehicle 420.

D&G 28 about to work to Audley (Matt)

We then saw First PMT 40305 arrive to work a 72 Clayton service. Having looked at the timetable and seem a 30 minutes frequency, I asked the driver out long it took to travel out and back on this bus to which he replied "half an hour". So to keep Matthew occupied whilst waiting for the 22, we decided to do this bus to Clayton and Back.

Inside 40305 (Matt)

Having never done this bus and route before it was interesting to see the strange route which loops back on itself and then crosses the road, finishing just short of Trentham / Hanchurch. at the end of the route I got up and got the return tickets. On the way back in to Newcastle, mum called to say she was on her way home, and asked if we wanted her to divert into Newcastle to pick us up. Matthew said yes. Whilst in Newcastle Matthew decided he wanted to catch D&G 132 which was on the 24 to Hanley via Penkhull and Stoke. As he'd already agreed to be picked, up we had to turn it down.

D&G 132 in Newcastle on the 24 to Hanley (Matt)

After a bit of running around pointing at every bus and wanting to catch it, Matthew eventually returned to the car. We drove home and got in the house at around 16:30. At this point I realised that Matthew could still get 40018 if he wanted in less hectic surroundings, So I looked up if it was possible to get a different bus back without any long festering waits. It turned out the was a 23A returning in virtually the same path through Blurton. So we left the house and as it was starting to rain we went to the nearest stop with a shelter to catch the 22.

First PMT Solo 40018 on the 22 Newcastle - Longton (Matt)

As we got to Ladybank Grove, 40020 turned in from Finstock Avenue to form a 23 to Hanley. We stopped on the bus we were on and 40020 followed us down through Blurton.

First PMT 40018 disappears towards Longton (Matt)

We got of at the bottom of Longton Hall Road and saw 40020 continue on it's journey to Hanley. Matthew visited the spar shop and we waited for the 23A. 40018 returned a few minutes before the 23A arrived with Adderley Green based Solo 40023.

First PMT Solo 40023 on a 23A to Blurton (Matt)

We go on this quite well filled bus and did it to it's destination Ladybank Grove.

40023 on arrival in Beaconsfield Drive (Matt)

After Matthew had got another picture we took the long walk home (Mark)

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Trip to Blurton 10-05-2011

Bus From To Service Operator

T408 JUX Blurton Abbey Hulton Charter Z carz
DX56 FYZ Abbey Hulton Amerton Farm Charter Blackfriars
DX56 FYZ Amerton Farm Abbey Hulton Charter Blackfriars
M420 UEH Abbey Hulton Blurton Charter Z carz
5 Blurton, Magdalen Road Blurton, Longton Hall Road (opp) 22 D&G
40022 Blurton Road, Opp Cemlyn Ave Newstead, Shepley Grove (adj) 23A First Potteries

College transport today was T408 JUX as per usual. At college we visited Amerton farm and did DX56 FYZ there and back. back home was old favorite M420 UEH.

As Matthew had nothing in his busy social calender for tonight, and he had been well behaved even at the bus rally. I decided to treat him with an extra trip out. I had already planned that he could get a bus to Blurton and back, going out on a D&G 22 and back on the 23A. Straight after his tea, I told him to put his shoes on cause we were going out. We walked the distance to the Magdalen Road stop and waited around 5 minutes for the 22. The bus turned the corner and was D&G

D&G 5 on the #22 Newcastle - Longton (Matt)

D&G 5 is one of the more modern CityRider liveried buses, and is fitted with seat belts. We did the short trip to the bottom of Blurton.

D&G leaving the Blurton Road, Longton hall Road (opp) srop (Matt)

We crossed the road and walked up the road to the next stop towards Heron cross to wait for the 23A. Whilst waiting we saw 40003 heading towards Hanley. It mean if we choose and the 22 isn't required, in future we can do this bus instead. Eventually the 23A turned up with Optare Solo 40022.

Inside 40022 (Matt)

We did this bus to Shepley Grove in Newstead. As it was quite dull Matthew was unable to get a good picture of the bus. Although we did try and race the bus to Ladybrook Grove to get another picture and only just failed! (Mark)

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Trip to the POPS rally 08-05-2011


G759 XREWedgwoodHanley bus station66Ex First PMT
CTT 23CHanley bus stationWedgwood66Ex Devon General
RGV 690WWedgwoodStone, Crown Street10Prince of the Road
GFM 104XStone, Crown StreetWedgwood10Ex First PMT

Today was the annual Wedgwood POPS rally, and we had been planning to come here for quite a while. Setting off around 10:20 we arrived on site to see Ex First PMT 860 depart on a Hanley bound service. First thing we do after getting a programme is to go shopping! Matthew brought £48 worth of DVD from Mrs Spencer and then brought some packs of photo's (10 for £5). He also brought the new First Fleet book and then checked to see if his favourite buses were still running or had been withdrawn. he brought another couple of books and then we had a wander round the non PMT bus exhibits. He had a quick sit on Bassetts SUX 476X and then we went to the PMT exhibits. As we were about to sit down and work out which buses we were going to catch, we saw ex First PMT Olympian 30035 move off. A quick consult of the program and it was seen to be doing the 11:30 to Hanley

Ex First PMT 30035 (759) sets off towards the bus stop to form the 11:30 to Hanley (Matt)

So we all went around to the bus stop where 30035 was waiting. We went on the top deck near to the stairs. on the way up, Matthew tried to help himself to the antique 320 hanley - Crewe timetable until I told him not to do it. As we travelled down to Hanley via Blurton Road, the A50 link and Victoria Road, we passed ex first PMT 30039 coming the other way. We checked the programme to see if we could get 860 in later. It turns out that it did it's one and only turn early on and we missed it! The next bus due towards Hanley was down to be worked by "B35/B36". It was at this point that I wished i pad attention to the number in the bus windows! We made a snap decision to wait for the next bus and to let 30035 go back to Wedgwood without us. We has some food in Tony's cafe and then Matthew took some pictures in the bus station, at the bus station was 31519 between relief duties for Alton Towers.

31519 in Hanley bus station (Matt)

After a few minutes, a maroon colour single decker appeared. It turned out to be Ex devon General 23.

Ex Devon General 23 arrives in Hanley bus station on the 12:00 from Wedgwood (Matt)

Not sure if there was more than one bus scheduled for this run, I asked the driver if this was the only 12:30 to Wedgwood to which he replied "yes". So we did this bus, which was quite full. Matthew sat down with a total stranger and we had to persuade him to sit with mum by offering him a window seat. So we did this back to Wedgwood. I don't think was on Matthew's wish list but he enjoyed it anyway. This bus took the route via snow hill and then past the railway station. There was a Wardles ALX400 outside the station on football duties. The bus then went back via Leek Road, City Road, A50 and then A5035. At this point we had another look around whilst mum went shopping on her own for "future" events :-). We decide that we were going to do the 13:30 departs to stone for 801 back. The 13:30 was book for a Prince of the Road coach and two PMT Bristols. Matthew wanted to do the coach and uncle Dave wanted to do one of the Bristols. I persuaded Uncle Dave to do the coach as the Bristols are regular performers at the Rally. We went to see the buses turn in so we could get a photograph before we went around to the bus stop.

Prince of the Road RGV 690W sets off towards the bus stop to form the 13:30 to Stone (Matt)

The coach was the first to set of and the Bristol followed straight behind. At the junction of the A5035 / A34 all three buses were together. The bus took the usual route to Stone, by passing the town and in through the south end of town.

Prince of the Road RGV 690W on arrival at Stone (Matt)

At Stone there was a few minutes wait for the the rear Bristol to arrive as it must have been held up at some lights.

Prince of the Road RGV 690W and Ex PMT 198 forming the 14:00 to Wedgwood (Matt)

We let these buses go in order to wait for the 14:30 to Wedgwood which was booked to be Ex First PMT Optare Delta. It's a bus that we have been on twice before but Matthew is a big fan. Whilst waiting we saw the road go quiet. It was closed off for a few minutes in allow a band to march past the end. then First PMT 65039 turned up on the service bus to Hanley.After a few more minutes the red and yellow Delta appeared.

Ex First PMT 801 on arrival on the 14:00 from Wedgwood (Matt)

As we took the picture we heard someone say "an Olympian was following us down". Sure enough Ex first PMT 30039 turned up on an addition 14;00 from Wedgwood. We asked Matthew if he want the Delta or the new Olympian and he choose the Olympian.

Ex First PMT 30039 forms an additional 14:30 to Wedgwood (Matt)

We got and were able to get top deck front seats. The bus went back via the A520 to Rough Close and then via Lightwood and then joining the A5035 in Dresden. Whilst I took a picture of Matthew in the domed mirror, tree hit the front window and gave me a right scare! We we arrived back Matthew allowed the bus to empty and took a picture of the top deck.

Inside Ex First PMT 30039 (Matt)

He also took another picture of the bus outside for good measure...

Ex First PMT 30039 on arrival at Wedgwood (Matt)

After this we had a quick look around. 801 had already got back and was parked up back in it original spot. we returned to the car and then we decided to go home at a few minutes after 15:00. On the way back we put the match on the radio to find that Stoke were winning 2-0! Final score for the match was stoke 3 arsenal 1. bring on Man City next Saturday... (Mark)

Monday, 2 May 2011

Trip to Blurton 02-05-2011


40180Blurton, Magdalen RoadLongton Hall Road, Adj Surgery22First Potteries
40180Longton Hall Road, Opp SurgeryTrentham Road, adj, Crowcrofts Road22First Potteries

Matthew hadn't been out since Saturday, and he was getting a little bored. We went for a short drive that took us through Newcastle and Longport. We filled up with LPG and then set off home. On the way home we saw 40180 in Trentham on the 22. I found somewhere to pull over and Matthew took a picture of this bus.

40180 on a service #22 from Newcastle to Longton (Matt)

I looked up the timetable on the Traveline site and decide that he could go home and have his tea and then come out again and get this bus in. After tea, I surprised Matthew by telling him we could catch 40180. We had a long walk to Magdalen road to pick up this service. After about 5 minute the bus appeared from around the corner.

40180 on a later service #22 (Matt)

We did this to Longton Hall Road, just in case there was a service 23 due. At the bus stop I used the text service and found out that there was no 23 due on a Sunday evening so we waited for 40180 to come back.

40180 disappears towards Newcastle (Matt)

As Matthew was relatively good on this short trip, he can look forward to other similar extra trips once every few weeks (Mark)