Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Trip to Newcastle / Hanley 31-12-2013


43876Magdalen Road, BlurtonNewcastle BS22First Potteries
32632Newcastle BSHanley BS25First Potteries
194Hanley BSBentilee, adj Cowley Way1Bakerbus
198Bentilee, opp Cowley WayHanley BS1Bakerbus
2224Hanley BSLongton TIX51Wardle Transport

Today we decided to go out for a spin on a few local buses. I checked the weather the night before and it was for clear dry weather. When I got back from work Matthew was up and already dressed and just eating his dinner of chicken popcorn and fries. I grabbed a cup of tea and a pot noodle and we set off to the bus stop on Magdalen Road. On the way we saw Z Carz coach CNZ 3828 parked up by the church. We got to the stop just before time and the Longton bus must have already gone past. We only had to wait a minute or two for dud First Potteries 43876 to round the corner on it's Newcastle bound service #22.

First Potteries 43876 in Blurton
We got on the bus and sat down near the back. This was our second run on this bus, the last time being between the exact same two points back in October. The bus turned onto the A5035 and we headed towards Trentham. We turned into New Inn Lane where we passed one of the last two Marshall Darts in the First Potteries fleet, 41070 on the #21A to Trentham. We carried on through into Hanford and down Church Lane. At the bottom of Church Lane we passed one of the 'new' additions to the First Potteries fleet, R reg 65572 on a #21 to Trentham. On the A34 we passed First Potteries 40011 on one of the other #22 turns and we also saw Wardle Transport 2131. When we got to Newcastle we saw 3 double deckers in the bus station all with different operators. We waited for the bus to empty and Matthew got a picture inside First Potteries 43876.

Inside First Potteries 43876
There was a Wardle Transport double decker which quickly departed on the #91 to Bradeley. There was also First Potteries 37156 on a #25 Keele Service and Bakerbus 265 was just departing on the #94 to Biddulph.

Bakerbus 265 in Newcastle bus station
We walled to the top end of the bus station to see what was about. Wardle Transport 3614 was on layover, presumably to work the next #91 to Bradeley. There were one or two required Scania's about such as First Potteries 60215 on the #34A to Hanley. We also saw D&G Scania 130 on the #85 to Hanley, and Versa 173 on the opposite working towards Crewe. We then spied required First Potteries 32632 on the #25 to Hanley.

First Potteries 32632 in Newcastle bus station
I asked Matthew if he wanted to do this bus and he said 'yes'. We walked down to the stand and waited whilst the new driver readied the bus for service. Eventually we got on the bus and we went upstairs.The top deck was empty so Matthew got a picture inside the bus before we sat down.

Inside First Potteries 32632
A few minutes the later the bu set off out of the bus station and we headed out of town and up George Street. We trundled through Hartshill and down the bank into Stoke town centre. By Stoke railway station we saw Wardle Transport 2409 on the X51 to Hanley. We climbed the hill past the college and we headed into Hanley via Hind Street. At the Hind Street bus layover area we saw Bakerbus 194 and also a Scragg Blue buses V356 EKY that we couldn't remember seeing before. We carried on into hanley town centre and then we headed into the bus station. Matthew visited the toilet before we started to head out to John Street car park to take a few bus pictures. On the way we saw Wardle Transport 1404 outside the bus station which was operating the bus driver shuttle bus service.

Wardle Transport 1404 in Hanley
Matthew took his picture and then went to say hello to the drivers. We then headed of to John Street car park. We stoped in our usual spot on the corner of level 3 of the car park. In the afternoon the sun is nearly in the right place to take good pictures from here. One such picture was of First Potteries 65730 which had just worked in on a #34 from Wereton.

First Potteries 65730 in Hanley bus station
Scraggs Blue Buses V356 EKY also made an appearance running up from Hind Street. It appears to be on a #31 to Werrington.

Scraggs V356 EKY in Hanley bus station
We didn't wait too long because it was quite chilly today. We saw Bakerbus 194 appear from Hind Street and we decided to walk back to the bus station. When we got back to the bus station I asked Matthew if he wanted to do this required bus and he said yes. He took a picture though the bus station door and we got on.

Bakerbus 194 in Hanley bus station
We got on the bus and sat down near the back. The bus left town and down Limekiln Bank before crossing over Leek Road and onto the A52. We turned right at the petrol station and we headed up into Bentilee. The bus turned by Twigg Street and up Dawlish Drive. By the time the bus had passed the community centre it had emptied out. As we had not done this service before I confirmed that it turned by the Wagon and Horses and we stayed on the bus until just before we reached the roundabout. As we got off the bus Matthew photographed the inside of this bus with it's fine GM Buses style 'diced carrot' moquette.

Inside Bakerbus 194
We watched the bus turn at the roundabout and head back towards Hanley as a #2. We didn't have to wait for long before we saw Bakerbus 198 arrive from Hanley having worked a #2 service. We took a picture of the bus as it paused on the other side of the road.

Bakerbus 198 in Benilee
The bus turned at the roundabout and came back as a #1 to Hanley. We got on the bus and Matthew insisted on peeping the horn (which is why we don't do Solo's very often...!). The bus was empty and Matthew got a picture inside.

Inside Bakerbus 198
The bus headed back down Dawlish Drive and onto the A52, before climbing into Hanley up Limekiln Bank. As we entered Hanley we saw 37160 on the #37 to Meir Square. This service also serves the Potteries Centre going around onto Stafford Street and past the town hall. When we got to the bus station Matthew went the toilet and had a bit of a wander around the bus station before we headed back to john Street car park before it went too dark to take anymore pictures. We took a few more picture and one such picture was of First Potteries 60215 that we had seen earlier in Newcastle.

First Potteries 60215 in Hanley bus station
Also we saw ALX200 Dart 40155 on the #7A service. The 'T' reg ones are now getting a little thin on the ground with only 40030/140/153/154/155 still in operation.

First Potteries 40155 in Hanley bus station
behind 40155 was Wardle Transport 4803 on the #19 to Bradeley.

Wardle Transport 4803 in Hanley bus station
We didn't hang around in the car park for long this time as it was getting cold and dark. We walked back to the bus station to see if we could catch another bus. We considered doing Wardle Transport 4895 which was on the #46 to Blurton. Matthew considered doing Scania on the #20A to Talke but it was going in the wrong direction and had pulled out just after he had taken a picture anyway. We had also considered doing required 40173 on the #23 to Blurton but he had turned that one down. Required 43875 was on the #24 which we could have done to stoke, but next to this was required Wardle Transport 2224 on the X51 to Cheadle.

Wardle Transport 2224 in Hanley bus station
We decided to do this as it was roughly in the direction of home and of course it's always better to do the older buses as they are most likely to be scrapped first. We sat down near the back and the bus set off through town.The bus headed out past the museum and down Broad street. We turned at the top of College Road and down through Shelton. We passed the railway station and headed into Fenton where we saw 40173 in front of us heading into Christchurch Street. We got onto the A50 via the A50 Link road and we went express into Longton. At the interchange we saw Wardle Transport 4805 going towards Hanley on the #46 and and 4895 going towards Blurton. Also in the interchange was Bennetts Dennis Dart DCZ 7648 having worked in from Stone on the #250.

Bennetts DCZ 7648 in Longton Interchange
We walked around the interchange to the car as mum had come to meet us. As we were in Longton we decided to go home via Z Carz to see what was there. The majority of the coaches were there today. First in the row was silver Van Hool Scania CNZ 3828 which we had seen earlier in the day in Blurton.

Z Carz CNZ 3828 in Longton
Next to this was Blackwood Coaches liveried coach B12 PWS.

Z Carz B12 FWS in Longton
At the back of the land in the shadows were LDV minibus YN03 HHU and Mercedes mini S952 VMY. Also there was Scania coach D104 XAN.

Z Carz D104 XAN in Longton
In the willow row compound was T408 JUX. We headed home along the A50 to Heron Cross and along Blurton Road. We then went onto the A5035 and we got home around 17:30. Matthew had the sausage roll that he should have ate in the car. We then had a late tea of Gammon and mash with beans. Matthew then chilled out on his computer until he went to bed sometime early in the following year...Mark

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