Saturday, 30 August 2014

Trip to Lichfield / Burton on Trent 30-08-2014


81Lichfield BSBurton upon Trent, Adj High StreetX12Midland Classic
2986Burton upon Trent, Adj Octagon CentreBarton Under Needwood, Adj St James's Church7AArriva Midlands
2958Barton Under Needwood, Opp No 17Lichfield BS7Arriva Midlands
3005Lichfield BSCoton (Tamworth), opp Footpath Oxbridge WayX65Arriva Midlands
3812Coton (Tamworth), Opp 1 Buckingham RoadLichfield BS765Arriva Midlands

Today we decided to re-visit Lichfield. We did not chosse where we were going once again until Saturday morning as the weather was very changeable. Matthew got up around 10:00 and had toast and orange juice for breakfast. We set off just before 12:00 and we drove through Blurton onto Blurton Road. We dropped something of with a friend before continueing towards Heron Cross. We saw Lightning travel T2 DLT here. We turned left when we got to the A50 and then left again onto the A500. At Hanford we turned Left again as we joined the Southbound A34. At the Darlaston Inn we saw Holmes Coaches YN09 AOJ. We carried on South past the edge of Stone and then we went South East down the A51. In colwich we saw Bova coach N501 MWW going the other way. When we got to Rugeley we turned of to vivst a chip shop off Green Lane. Matthew had Chips sausage and gravy wash down with a can of Coke. We also visited the local shop and he had a few chocolate bars for later. As we left the car park we saw Arriva Midlands 3736 on a #26 service. We rejoined the South east bound A51 and we carried on towards Lichfield. We we got to town we parked up in the car park behind the bus station. We said goodbye to mum and we started taking pictures. The first thing we saw was Arriva Midlands 2277 on a #15 to Boney Hay.

Arriva Midlands 2277 in Lichfield bus station
Also in the bus station was Arriva Midlands 3762 on a #60 to Cannock.

Arriva Midlands 3762 in Lichfield bus station
We went over to the toilets and when Matthew had finished using them we walked back towards the bus station where Arriva Midlands 2125 was on a #35 to Walsall.

Arriva Midlands 2125 in Lichfield bus station
Mattthew had indicated that he wanted to travel towards Burton upon Trent. so we looked at which the next service was. There wasn't a #7 until well after 14:00, so we thought about catch in a X12 service. Going in the opposite direction towards Sutton Coldfield was Midland Classic 83.

Midland Classic 83 in Lichfield bus station
Whilst e waited for the Burton bound X12, we saw Arriva Midlands 3766 arrive from Cannock, about to form the #825 to Stafford.

Arriva Midlands 3766 in Lichfield bus station
A few minutes later Midland Classic 81 arrived from Sutton Coldfield on the Burton bound X12 service.

Midland Classic 81 in Lichfield bus station
We got on the bus and booked singles to Burton. We were hoping to com back on an Arriva bus. We sat down near the bac of this well used service. The bus set off out of the bus station and turned left onto the A5127. We passed a hospital on the left and then we crossed over the West coast main line near to Lichfield Trent Valley railway station. Continuing North on the A5127 we joined onto the Northbound A38. Here we then had a spirited run up to Branston along the A38 as you would expect of an 'X' service. The booked time of the 13 mile journey was 23 minutes! We came off the A38 at the A512 and then we turned right onto Main Street. At the edge of town we circled around to the left so that we could travel up New Street where the bus terminted. We allowed the bus to empty and then Matthew got a picture inside this bus.

Inside Midland Classic 81
Before we walked into town got another picture of Midland Classic 81.

Midland Classic 81 in Burton upon Trent
Matthew indicated that he wanted to use the toilet, so we set off on a walk to find one. We walked onto Union Street and we saw a bus approaching. It was required Trent Barton 624 on a Villager 4 service.

Trent Barton 624 in Burton upon Trent
Further down the road we could see an X38 Burton Derby service approaching. It was required Trent Barton Optare Tempo 308.

Trent Barton 308 in Burton upon Trent
We walked across a car park and into a pedestrianised area of town. We asked a council work where the public toilet were and he directed us towards the market hall. The toilet were housed in a small victorian building next to the Victorian Market hall. Once we had used the toilet we headed back into town. On the first bus stop we encountered we saw required Arriva Midlands 3715 on a #2 service.

Arriva Midlands 3715 in Burton upon Trent
Further down the road we saw required Arriva Midlands double decker 4217 on a #8 service.

Arriva Midlands 4217 in Burton upon Trent
Further down New Street we saw required Trent Barton 617 on another Villager 4 service.

Trent Barton 617 in Burton upon Trent
Further down the road we saw required Midland Classic Enviro 350H bus 203 on the #21 service.

Midland Classic 203 in Burton upon Trent
Outside the Cooper Square shopping centre we saw required Arriva Midlands Versa 2986 on the #7A to Barton upon Needham

Arriva Midlands 2986 in Burton upon Trent
As this was heading part way towards Lichfield we decided to do this bus. We got on and booked Arriva Midlands Daysavers at £6.20. As the back of the bus was empty, before we sat down Matthew took a picture of the inside of the bus.

Inside Arriva Midlands 2986
The bus set off out of town down the A5018 and then we turned right into Clay Lane. We passed a Morrisons store on a retail park before joining the Southbound A38. We had a fast run down to to the B5016 where we came off and went under the A38 towards Barton. When we got into the village we got up and got off. Matthew got another picture of Arriva Midlands 2986.

Arriva Midlands 2986 in Barton Under Needwood
I realised I had left my camera on the bus so I jumped back on and spoke to the driver. I retrieved my camera before the bus pulled off into the distance... phew! We looked at the stop and realised that the next #7 to Lichfield didn't go from either the stop that we got off or the stop opposite. Not to worry, we had 30 minutes or so to find the right stop. We walked along the road to the next corner and we spotted a pair of stops on Wales Lane. We found a stop where the next #7 to Lichfield departed, and as we had time walked back to the toilets on Crowberry Lane. Afterwards we visited the Co-op food store on the corner of Crowberry Lane and Main Street where Matthew brought a can of Coke and some Bakewell Slices and a single chocolate bar. Afterward we sat on the corner of Wales Lane and Matthew ate 2 Bakewell Slices and washed then down with a small bottle of orange juice out of the trip bag supplies. A few minutes before the bus was due we left the bench to go and stand at the bus stop. A few minutes later we saw another Versa approaching. It was required Arriva Midlands 2958.

Arriva Midlands 2958 in Barton Under Needwood
We got on the bus and flashed the Daysaver Tickets. We sat down on the right just before the hump and the bus set off along the A5016 to Yoxall. We turned left onto the A513 and headed Southwards. At kings Bromley we turned left onto the A513 and we headed towards the A38. Running parallel to the A38 we turned back North before heading into Alrewas and Somewhere near we saw Viking Y159 EAY and Edwards Coaches BN63 NYW. We went through Fradley. We went into a modern housing estate and past a lerge industrial estate before rejoining the A38 for a short run down to the edge of Lichfield. We headed into town along the A5127 and into the bus station. When we got to Lichfield we let the bus empty and Matthew took a picture inside the now empty Arriva Midlands 2958.

Inside Arriva Midlands 2958
It was now gone 16:00 and we had only been on three buses, albeit over quite a long distance. We needed to catch something quick if we were going to get another coupe of buses in before we went home. We didn't fancy doing any of the Cannock based Wright Pulsar's on either the #60 or the #825 and the #35 had finished for today. There is quite a frequent service between Lichfield and Tamworth so we decided to head in that direction. It wasn't long before required Arriva Midlands 3005 came into the bus station to work the next X65 service.

Arriva Midlands 3005 in Lichfield bus station
We got on the bus and sat own near to the back. For some reason Matthew forgot to take a picture inside this one. The bus set off out of town South down the A51 towards Birmingham. As the road turned East towards Tamworth the bus followed it. We passed a Scania on either a #765 or a #785 and a few minutes later we passed an X65. We thought there wouldn't be another bus coming the other way for a while so we thought we could get off near Coton and perhaps make one back. We crossed over the Tame and the Coventry Canal, but before we got to the roundabout we passed Arriva Midlands Scania 3802 on another #765 or 785. As we go to the roundabout we saw an Arriva Midlands Mercedes Citaro on a #31 to Coton Green. We carried on a few more stops towards Tamworth and we decided to get off. As the bus carried on we got another picture of Arriva Midlands 3005.

Arriva Midlands 3005 in Coton
We used the phone and check for the next bus using ... There was a X65 in just over ten minutes. This was followed by a Central Bus X55 to Lichfield and then a #765. Just after the #765 was a #3A to Coton Green. We decided that the X65 was going to be 3005 coming back and we were going to let that got so we could get in another new buses all being well. Matthew had a Millky Way and then we decided to cross over the road to photograph the the buses on the other side of the road before the #765 was due. As predicted Arriva Midlands 3005 came back first on the X65 to Licfield, followed by Central Bus YX63 ZXK on the X55. We crossed back over as the #765 was due next. Going towards Tamworth we saw required Arriva Midlands Volvo B6 2619 on the #3. We saw an Arriva Midlands Merceds approaching in the distance and assuming it would be the #765 we stuck our hands out. As it got closer we saw it was Arriva Midlands 3016 on a #3A service so we waved to the driver to let him know we didn't want this bus.

Arriva Midlands 3016 in Coton
A short distance behind the #3A was an Arriva Midlands Scania on the #765. It was required Arriva Midlands 3812.

Arriva Midlands 3812 in Coton
We flashed our tickets and sat down at the back of the bus. A quick check of the football results revealed that Stoke had a shock win over Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium! We headed back down the A51 before turning right at the barracks. We passed through the village of Whittington before heading back onto the A51 just east of Lichfield. We followed the road back into the town centre before turning right into Birmingham Road and then into the bus station. We let the bus empty and then Matthew took a picture inside Arriva Midlands 3812.

Inside Arriva Midlands 3812
As we got off the bus it had just started to rain. We went to use the toilet bus they had been locked up for the night. We returned to the car so we headed out of town along the A51. Matthew ate a sausage roll and washed it down with a bottle of Irn Bru. After a slight unplanned diversion onto the A461 (OK so I took a wrong turn...), we headed back onto the Northbound A51. We passed North through Rugeley and Colwich and we joined onto the A34 South of Stone. We stopped at the Shell garage on The Fillybrooks to fill back, and then we continued North. Just North of the Darlaston Inn we passed 3 Leons coaches going South, presumably empty after bring fan back from Manchester City. At Trentham we turned right onto the A5035 and we did this up to Longton to see what was at Z Carz. There were a few vehicles parked up on the spare ground tonight. First was Mercedes minibus W221 CDN.

Z Carz W221 CDN in Longton
Next was the former Alton Towers transport coach, Z Carz M534 RSO.

Z Carz M534 RSO in Longton
Next to this was another Mercedes minibus, Z Carz S952 VMY.

Z Carz S952 VMY in Longton
Then there was another Mercedes minibus, former Phil Smiths Travel M372 NWN.

Z Carz M372 NWN in Longton
Next was a Ford minibus which I can't recall seeing before, BN03 OVS.

Z Carz BN03 OVS in Longton
We turned left into Willow Row and there were a couple of minibus here in the compound. THere was long term SORN LDV minibus T408 JUX and from the taxi fleet YE52 UZX Parked on the road was Ford minibus FP06 WTW.

Z Carz FP06 WTW in Longton
We headed back onto the A50 and we came off the A50 at Heron Cross. We passed Lightning Travel T2 DLT again before heading through Blurton. We got home at approximately 19:15. For a late tea Matthew had bangers and mash followed by a couple more Bakewell Slices. Matthew then chilled out on his computer until bedtime around 01:00... Mark

Friday, 29 August 2014

Trip to Fenton / Trent Vale 29-08-2014


41501Magdalen Road, BlurtonTrent Vale, opp Chubb Way (Unmarked)22First Potteries

Today we decided to go to Trent Vale on the bus. Not before Matthew had been out for the day with his new day service. Matthew got up around 07:45 and had some toast and orange juice and used his computer whilst he waited to be picked up. He was picked up a little before 09:00 and the drove him through Blurton via Beaconsfield Drive and left onto Ashby Crescent. We got back onto Beaconsfield Drive and turned left onto Church Road At Heron Cross lights we went straight over and then left onto Christchurch Street and then to his destination. Matthew spent the morning in the sensory room and using a computer. For dinner Matthew had sausage chips and gravy followed by a bakewell tart and custard. We walked to the local pub and spent the afternoon looking at buses go past. We saw 53209 on the #23 to Hanley.

First Potteries 53209 in Fenton
Twenty minutes later we saw 53829 on the following #23 to Hanley.

First Potteries 53829 in Fenton
Going towards Blurton on the #23 was First Potteries 53208. This was followed by First Potteries 53830 on the next #23 to Hanley.

First Potteries 53830 in Fenton
At home time we took Matthew onto Glebedale Road Street and down City Road to Stoke. The went South down the A500 and then East on the A50 to right onto Stanley Matthews Way. We then went left onto the A5035 getting home around 15:00. At home Matthew had toast and some dandelion & burdock. Just before 15:30 we set off waling all the way to the bus stop on Magdalen Road. We did not know what was working this service as I had missed seeing it earlier We did know that it was going to be First Potteries 41494/41497/41512/42892 or 43877 as these had been seen working on other turns. At 15:42 a few minutes late we saw a First Potteries Caetano Dart turn the corner. As it got closer we saw it was required First Potteries 41501.

First Potteries 41501 in Blurton
We got on the bus and sat down near to the back. The bus was fairly well filled as it set off right onto the A5035. The bus carried on through to Trentham and we passed First Potteries 43877 on a #22 to Dresden. We turned right into New Inn Lane and down past the man in Space before climbing the hill towards Hanford. We turned rightonto Wilson Road before going left onto Church Lane. We passed First Potteries 41522 on a #21 to Pacific Drive. We crossed the A34 and then went under the A500. The bus emptied a little and Matthew took a picture facing forward.

Inside First Potteries 41501
We turned right into Harpfields road and we got up and got off the bus. Matthew took another picture of First Potteries 41501 as it headed of towards Newcastle & Hanley.

First Potteries 41501 in Trent Vale
We hadn't passed the next Dresden bound #22 so we though about waiting for it.We decided no to waited and we walked around the corner towards the pub. I had allowed extra time in case Matthew wanted to get off and wait for another bus. As such we had a few minutes time to kill. Going towards Stafford we saw dud 65040.This was followed by required First Potteries 43875 on the #22 to Dresden. Had we waited for the #101 at hanford we would have been on dud First Potteries 65004 which we saw on the Hanley bound #101.

First Potteries 65004 in Trent Vale
First Potteries 65004 was a bus that we had traveled on from Alton Towers to Werrington back in June 2010. We waited for a few minutes for mum to arrive and we went into the pub where Matthew had a brunch with bread and butter followed by toffee sponge pudding with ice cream. Whilst we ate highlights of the passing buses Stantons of Stoke ONZ 1128 plus First Potteries double deckers 32634 & 32639 on #101's. After we had finished eating we called Uncle Dave and we went to pick him up. We drove along the A34 and onto the Northbound A500 where we passed Maynes Irizar coach NIB 4162. we went East at the A50. We came off the A50 at Heron Cross and we dropped into Fenton passing First Potteries 40027 on a Blurton bound #23A service. After we had picked up uncle Dave,we set off back through Heron Cross and through Blurton getting home at around 18:00. Matthew then chilled out watching 'On the Yorkshire Buses' and bus videos on his computer. He then chilled out until bedtime around 00:00...Mark

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Trip to Tamworth / Whittington 23-08-2014


4206Tamworth bus interchangeMile Oak, adj French Avenue110Arriva Midlands
4205Mile Oak, opp French AvenueTamworth bus interchange110Arriva Midlands
KV03 ZFDTamworth bus interchangeElford (Staffs), Adj Social Club82Solus Coaches
KV03 ZFDElford (Staffs), Adj Social ClubTamworth bus interchange82Solus Coaches
2617Tamworth bus interchangeCoton Green, adj Roman Way3Arriva Midlands
2614Coton Green, adj Shopping PrecinctTamworth bus interchange3AArriva Midlands
3809Tamworth bus interchangeWhittington, adj Barracks Museum765Arriva Midlands
3805Whittington, opp Barracks MuseumTamworth bus interchange765Arriva Midlands

Today we decided to re-visit Tamworth. Once again the weather was very changeable so we left the decision until Saturday morning. Matthew got up at around 09:45 and had toast and juice for breakfast. Research consisted of checking we had the Tamworth timetables on the phone, and looking for a place to eat. The weather was forecast for Tamorth that afternoon was for mainly overcast with sunny intervals. Uncle Dave hadn't stopped over so we set off to pick him up around 11:30. Today was our first trip out in the new diesel 'Support vehicle'. We set off through Blurton and headed towards Heron Cross. On Blurton Road we saw a rare outing for step entranced Dart Copeland's Tours MIB 797 on the #40 Longton - Fenton - Longton circular. We headed through Fenton and stopped to pick up uncle Dave and then headed bac up to Heron Cross. We joined the A50 and went West to the A500. Here we headed South to the A34. As the weather was poor we decided to take it easy and go the most direct slower route along A roads. As we passed near to Stone we saw Bennetts Solo MX52 FDJ on a #1 town service. We carried on South until we reached the A51. We then went South East along the A51. When we got to Colwich the diesel light came on and we needed to find a garage. We passed an expensive looking garage near Rugeley, we carried on South-East along the A51 and we reached Lichfield. Just on the other side of town we came a cross a Shell garage on the junction of the A51 & A5206 and put in some diesel for the trip. We got back onto the A51 and carried on East towards Tamworth. We got to the edge of town and went straight in, before turning into Aldergate. The car parking spaces by the Assembly Rooms off Corporaion Street were full so we went back around the small one way system and parked in the car park off Aldergate. Last time we came to Tamworth we hadn't researched to eating situation, so we ate at the truck stop off the A5. This time we had researched a cafe called Cafe Rio which is situated in the car park off Aldergate. Matthew had a breakfast washed down with a bottle of Coke. After we had finished eating we collected the trip bag from the support vehicle and said goodbye to mum. We walked across the car park and into Corporation Street, which with it's five bus stops it is know collectively as Tamworth bus interchange... As we crossed the street we saw a double decker arriving on the #110 from Birmingham. It was required Arriva Midlands 4206.

Arriva Midlands 4206 in Tamworth bus interchange
We waited for the driver change to take place and then we got on the bus. As it was empty, Matthew took a picture of the lower saloon.

Inside Arriva Midlands 4206
We booked a Midland DaySaver at £6.20, as we intended to try and go a little further today. We went upstairs and sat down, waiting a few minutes before the bus departed. At 14:00 the bus set off onto Church Street and as we waited at the traffic lights we saw dud Arriva Midlands 4200 coming in to form the next #110 departure at 14:15. We had been on this bus on our previous visit to Tamworth back in June this year. This bus has now been covered in an all over advert for the new Sapphire buses coming to Tamworth to work the #110 in September. We carried on West until we got to the roundabout and then we went South onto Tamedrive. At the big roundabout we turned left onto Riverdrive, before heading South past the Ventura shopping park along the A4091. We crossed under the A5 and past the previous further point on this service in Fazeley. We crossed over the canal and we turned right onto the old A5 which has now been renumbered to the B5404. The road isn't very wide by modern standards but then Romans knew how to build a road straight... We passed required Arriva Midlands Mercedes Citaro 3008 on the next Tamworth bound #110, so we knew we had about 7 minutes before we passed the next bus. We passed a lumber yard with a big crane that can lift whole tree trunks, and then carried on West for around a mile before we reached Mile Oak. We turned South onto the A453 and we decided to get off as there was a bus due back the other way any minutes now. We got off and Matthew got another picture of Arriva Midlands 4206.

Arriva Midlands 4206 in Mile Oak
There was a bus stop opposite, but it took over a minutes to get across this busy road. Once at the stop there wasn't much of a view down the road because a a big hedge. I had to stand on the road to see the bus and retreat back onto the pavement when I saw it approaching. Even then Matthew didn't quite get enough notice to get good picture of this bus, dud Arriva Midlands 4205.

Arriva Midlands 4205 in Mile Oak
We got on the bus and flashed the tickets and the we went upstairs and sat down. The bus was quite well filled. We set of North on the A453 and then East to Fazeley. We turned North onto the A4091 and we passed Arriva Midlands 4200 again, this time going towards Birmingham. As we passed Ventura Park we saw Arriva Midlands Volvo B6 2613 turning into the out of town shopping complex. The bus was branded and working the #6 service. We got back onto the A51 Riverdrive and then onto Tamedrive before running into town along Church Street and Aldergate. On Church Street we passed Arriva Midlands 3008 on the next #110 to Birmingham as expected. We pulled into Tamworth bus interchange and we waited for the bus to empty so Matthew could take a picture inside Arriva Midlands 4205.

Inside Arriva Midlands 4205
We got off the bus and there were a couple of services in the bus station. There were a couple of buses in the interchange and of course we hadn't taken a decent picture of Arriva Midlands 4205 yet today. I asked Matthew what he wanted to do and he pointed to a anonymous looking white minibus parked up. It was required Solus Coaches KV03 ZFD.

Solus Coaches KV03 ZFD in Tamworth bus interchange
We walked up to the driver and asked if it was a service bus and he told us yes. It was the #82 Clifton Campville circular service. which went out via Ashby Road and and No Man's Heath and back via Harlaston, Elford and Wigginton. The bus set off at 14:35 and went around the one way system and onto Aldergate. We passed the Arriva bus garage with the only bus visible being their trainer vehicle. We turned right into Albert Road and back passed the railway station along Offadrive. We crossed the railway line and then we sat at the temporary lights on Upper Gungate for a short while. Once the lights had changed we went North East onto Ashby Road. Once out of town it was quite a fast run. We were slowed a little by an elderley Land Rover which turned off before we got to No Man's Heath. At No Man's Heath we turn West towards Clifton Campville. Another spirited run along Clifton Road and we arrived in the village of Clifton Campville. Most passengers alighted opposite the Green Man pub, just leaving ourselves and one lady with here dog. We carried on West To Harlaston and the lady and her dog alighted here. As often is the case on rural runs, the driver knew most of his passengers and was a friendly and talkative chap. As we carried on we talked about buses and bus travel and then he told us about the Scarecrow Festival in the next village. Apparently the festival is held every year in this village over the August bank holiday weekend and resident along the route make scarecrows and place them in their garden in the designated streets. All the scarecrows have a number and you pick up forms from the village hall so that you can pick the best ones. People who want to enter the competition who don't live on the route display the scarecrows in the village hall. One garden with large ornate gates made a pair of matching Beefeater guard scarecrows that looked like they were guarding the gate of Buckingham Palace! Details of the festival can be found here... Once out of Elford we went back South down the A513 until we reached Whittington Lane. This was a single lane track into the village. As you would expect we saw a vehicle coming the other way! There was a passing place about half way along the lane and once the car had passed we carried on into the village. We turned South and picked up a couple of folk before heading South down to the A513. We passed Arriva Midlands double decker 4201 on the #2 service and then we came into town and inter the interchange via Aldergate. We waited for the bus to empty and Matthew took a picture inside this fine example of a Mercedes minibus.

Inside Solus Coaches KV03 ZFD
Once off the bus we bumped into mum and as it was warm she persuaded Matthew to give up his hoodie. We saw a few buses whilst we decided what to do next. Arriva Midlands 3804 was about to work the next #110 to Birmingham

Arriva Midlands 3804 in Tamworth bus interchange
Stagecoach Warwickshire 36174 was also in the interchange on a #766 to Atherstone.

Stagecoach Warwickshire 36174 in Tamworth bus interchange
Matthew wanted the toilet so we walked up to the public toliet block at the top end of the interchange. Whilst he was in there Happy Al's coach AA10 ALS made an appearance. Once hew was finished we walked back into the interchange and Matthew took a picture of this coach.

Happy Al's AA10 ALS in Tamworth bus interchange
At this point we decided to do required Arriva Midlands Volvo B6 2617 which was on the #3 to Coton Green.

Arriva Midlands 2617 in Tamworth bus interchange
We got on the bus and flashed our tickets. We sat down near to the back and the bus waited until it's departure time. The bus set off onto Church Road and back onto Aldergate. We went passed the end of the railway station and crossed the railway line before turning left into Salter Lane. The bus followed Salter Lane around and into the estate. The bus seemed to take a different route to what remembered because it did! There seems to be a #3 and a #3A, with unusually the #3A service going clockwise and the #3 going anti-clockwise. As such we came down Fontenaye Road the opposite way from what had done before. When we passed the shops we got up to get off the bus. Before we got off Matthew took a picture inside empty Arriva Midlands 2617.

Inside Arriva Midlands 2617
We got off the bus and Matthew took another picture of Arriva Midlands 2617 as it went off into the distance.

Arriva Midlands 2617 in Coton Green
We headed across to the shops and we went into the Co-op food store. In here Matthew picked a can of Coke and a few chocolate bars and we headed to the till. He said hello to the cashier and we paid for the thing and left the shop to walk to the bus stop. From this side of the road the #3A departed. There was one due in a few minutes. Matthew had time to eat the Toffee Crisp that he had just brought, and then the bus turned up. It was another Volvo B6, and as it got closer we saw it was required Arriva Midlands 2614. We got on the bus and sat down near to the back. The bus set off back through the estate in the opposite direction from earlier and people were getting off the bus and it was emptying out. Matthew took a picture facing forwards into the bus as it was empty in front of us. We went back over the railway line and into Aldergate before entering the bus interchange. When we got there, Matthew waited for the bus to empty before taking another picture inside this bus.

Inside Arriva Midlands 2614
We got off and Matthew got a picture of Arriva Midlands 2614 from the outside too.

Arriva Midlands 2614 in Tamworth bus interchange
There was time for on quick out and back trip before we went home. On the #6 service again, Arriva Midlands branded volvo B6 2613 made an appearance in the interchange.

Arriva Midlands 2613 in Tamworth bus interchange
I asked Matthew if he wanted to do this bus and he said no. Behind this was required Arriva Midlands 3809 on the next #765 to Lichfield.

Arriva Midlands 3809 in Tamworth bus interchange
Whilst we waited for the bus to be readied for service, We saw all over advertisement bus Arriva Midlands 4200 re-appear from Birmingham.

Arriva Midlands 4200 in Tamworth bus interchange
Matthew decided to go toilet. Instead of going to the toilet block he decided to use the toilet in the Tourist Office opposite. We came out of the toilet and the bus had started to load. We flashed our tickets and sat down near to the back of the bus. The bus set off out of town along church Street and carried straight on along the A51. On the edge of town we passed the road that goes into the other end of Coton Green and we carried on over the Coventry Canal and the river Tame. We climbed the hill through Hopwas before passing Packington free-range pork farm and the Staffordshire Regiment museum. We had worked out that the bus passed the one coming the other way somewhere between the museum and Whittington village. After we turned off the A51 we got up to get off at the next stop.

Arriva Midlands 3809 in Whittington
We crossed the road to wait for the bus back. Matthew ate the chocolate of a Kinder Egg and we made up the ball that came inside it in six interlocking pieces. He also had a small bottle of cherryade. We heard the bus and it came around the corner. It was required Arriva Midlands 3805.

Arriva Midlands 3805 in Whittington
We flashed our tickets and sat down near to the back. A couple of people got off in Hopwas and Matthew took a picture inside of the empty bus in front of us.

Inside Arriva Midlands 3805
The bus carried on into town and over the Coventry Canal and the river Tame. We carried on into town along the A51 and we entered the interchange of Aldergate. When we got off the bus we took a few more picture before we left. Arriva Midlands 4205 made a re-appearance so matthew took a picture of it.

Arriva Midlands 4205 in Tamworth bus interchange
We walked to the toilet block as the tourist office had now closed. After Matthew had used the toilet we walked back to the new 'support vehicle' after another successful afternoons bus travel. Mum was waiting back at he car for us and we had Greggs sausage rolls and Matthew had a 500ml bottle of Irn Bru. As we had fuel I decided to go back a slightly different way. We set off back along the A51 and into Lichfield. Once we had crossed through the small city we came to a roundabout with a junction for the A515 to Ashbourne. I knew this road crossed the A50 East of Uttoxeter, and we wanted to visit Z Carz anyway... We turned onto the A515 and a couple of miles North we passed Arriva Midlands 3758 on a #825 Stafford - Lichfield service. We carried on North and we passed through the villages of King's Bromley, Yoxall and Draycott in the Clay. Eventually we reached the A50 ans we went West towards Uttoxter. Near to Doveridge we passed Gold Star minibus PUI 5768 parked in a layby. We carried on passed Uttoxter and onto the long stretch of the A50 up to Draycott in the Moors. We carried on passed Blythe Bridge and Meir and we came of the A50 at Longton to check out what was on the depot at Z Carz tonight. First in the Row was Mercedes minibus W221 CDN the driver was just coming off and the door was open.

Z Carz W221 CDN in Longton
Next was Mercedes minibus M372 NWN.

Z Carz M372 NWN in Longton
Behind this was Volvo coach M534 RSO.

Z Carz M534 RSO in Longton
Behind the coach was Airport Transfer bus DL03 HHU. At the back of the site was silver LDV minibus CN57 HWA.

Z Carz CN57 HWA in Longton
We also saw Mercedes minibus BV51 BNO which also had the door open as the driver was getting off.

Z Carz BV51 BNO in Longton
We turned into Willow Row where we saw Ford minibus BN03 OVS and long term SORN minibus T408 JUX. We headed back onto the A50 and through heron Cross. We saw Lightning Travel T2 DLT before continuing through Blurton. At the Ladybank Road stop we saw First Potteries 43876 on the #22 to Dresden. We got home around 18:20. For a late tea Matthew had bangers and mash with carrots followed by a lemon cake. Matthew then chilled out on his computer until bedtime around 00:45... Mark