Saturday, 25 October 2014

Trip to Tamworth / Sutton Coldfield 25-10-2014


4411Tamworth bus interchangeSutton Coldfield (Birmingham), Gracechurch Shopping Centre (Stop SD)110Arriva Midlands
4409Sutton Coldfield (Birmingham), Gracechurch Shopping Centre (Stop SH)Tamworth bus interchange110Arriva Midlands
3013Tamworth bus interchangeCoton Green, opp Shopping Precinct3Arriva Midlands
3010Coton Green, adj Shopping PrecinctTamworth bus interchange3AArriva Midlands
3809Tamworth bus interchangeWhittington, adj Barracks Museum765Arriva Midlands
3800Whittington, opp Barracks MuseumTamworth bus interchange765Arriva Midlands

Today We also planned on going to Portsmouth. we decided to re-visit Tamworth. somewhere new... Sutton Coldfield. Since our last visit to Tamworth, new Enviro400 double decker buses had been introduced on the #110 to Birmingham. We checked the weather to see what conditions were going to be like. The weather had been forecast fore mainly dry and sunny weather with an occasional shower. It was now starting to get colder. Matthew got up just after 10:00 and had toast and orange juice for breakfast. We gave Matthew a choice of places to got to and he chose Tamworth. We did some research on the Staffordshire County Council site to check the route of some buses. Just after 12:00 we got in the car and set off onto the A5035. We decided to go the along A roads, so we we along the A34 before turning Southwards towards Stone. Just South of of Stone we turned left onto the A51 and we headed Eastward towards Colwich. We passed nearby Rugeley and went close to the centre of Lichfield before going into Tamworth town centre along the A51. We parked in the car park between Aldergate and Corporation Street. We ate at the cafe Rio where Matthew had an English breakfast with toast washed down with a can of Coke. After we had finished eating we said goodbye to mum and we took the short walk towards the bus interchange. Matthew used the toilet and then we had a look around to see what we could could catch. At the Northern end of Corporation Street was Central Bus YX63 ZXL on the X55 to Lichfield.

Central Bus YX63 ZXL in Tamworth bus interchange
Further up Corporation street was required Arriva Midlands 4413.

Arriva Midlands 4413 in Tamworth bus interchange
As we considered walking across to catch this bus, it was departure time and bus went. We would catch the next bus down to Sutton Coldfield. In the meaintime we had a quick wander around taking pictures. At the bottom of the interchange we saw dud Arriva Midlands 4200 on the #2 Perrycrofts circular.

Arriva Midlands 4200 in Tamworth bus interchange
We then saw required Arriva Midlands Mercedes single decker 3000 to the #6 to Ventura Park.

Arriva Midlands 3000 in Tamworth bus interchange
A few minutes later required Arriva Midlands 4411 appeared to work the next service #110 to Birmingham.

Arriva Midlands 4411 in Tamworth bus interchange
We got on the bus and booked a group Day Saver ticket at £12. We went upstairs and as the rear of the top deck was empty Matthew took a picture inside of Arriva Midlands 4411.

Inside Arriva Midlands 4411
The bus set off out of the interchange before turning right to head towards Lichfield. Just after the fire station we turned left to go down towards ventura Park. We turned left following the Eastbound A51 before turning right onto the A4091. We crossed under the A5 and then we crossed the canal. At Fazeley we turned right for the run down to Mile Oak. At Mile Oak we turned left onto the A453, passing the most distant point at which we had previously been on the #110 back in August. We carried on South over the A38 at the Bassetts Pole roundabout and we carried on into town. When we got to Sutton Coldfeld the bus pull into the main thoroughfare were all the buses stop on The Lower Parade. We got off the bus into this busy street and there were already quite a few buses present. First we saw National Express West Midlands 4055 on a #5 to West Bromwich.

NX West Midlands 4055 in Sutton Coldfield
We then saw National Express West Midlands 4684 on a #77 to Walsall.

NX West Midlands 4684 in Sutton Coldfield
We then saw NX West Midlands 4906 arriva on a #907 from Birmingham.

NX West Midlands 4906 in Sutton Coldfield
We crossed the road and Matthew sat down and had a drink of orange Fanta and a flapjack. We then saw Arriva Midlands 4407 on the #110 to Tamworth.

Arriva Midlands 4407 in Sutton Coldfield
We decided to walk up to the road opposite and take pictures. On the way up to the crossing we saw National Express West Midlands 4916 on a #902 to Hill Hook.

NX West Midlands 4916 in Sutton Coldfield
We crossed over the road and we saw Arriva Midlands 4408 on the next #110 to Birmingham.

Arriva Midlands 4408 in Sutton Coldfield
We then saw WMSNT KX59 CYY on the #167 to Erdington.

WMSNT KX59 CYY in Sutton Coldfield
We then saw National Express West Midlands 4780 coming into The Lower Parade on an unidentified service.

NX West Midlands 4780 in Sutton Coldfield
We walked back to the stop ready to go back towards Tamworth. Whilst we waited we saw National Express West Midlands 1907 on a #66A to Erdington.

NX West Midlands 1907 in Sutton Coldfield
On the road opposite we also saw National Express West Midlands 4918 on a #904 to Birmingham.

NX West Midlands 4918 in Sutton Coldfield
A few minutes later we saw the bus to Tamworth approaching. It was required Arriva Midlands 4409.

Arriva Midlands 4409 in Sutton Coldfield
We got on the bus and we flashed to ticket. We went upstairs and the bus set off out of town towards the A453. The bus crossed over the Bassetts Pole roundabout and we headed up to Mile Oak. We turned right onto Watling Street and we carried on to Fazeley and then turned left onto A4091. We went past Ventura Park and the turned left onto the A51. We followed the A51 over the Tame and then we turned right towards the town centre. We turned into Aldergate and then into the interchange. The bus emptied out and Matthew got a picture inside Arriva Midlands 4409.

Inside Arriva Midlands 4409
It was around 15:30, so we thought we might see the next bus on the #82 service. The bus did turn up and it was a new vehicle for Solus Coaches, MV59 ACX.

Solus Coaches MV59 ACX in Tamworth bus interchange
Also in the interchange around the same time we saw Arriva Midlands 3811 on the #115 to Birmingham.

Arriva Midlands 3811 in Tamworth bus interchange
Whilst we waited to find something suitable to catch we also saw Stagecoach Warwickshire 36153 about to work to Nuneaton.

Stagecoach Warwickshire 36153 in Tamworth bus interchange
We visited the tourist information office and Matthew used the toilets. Afterward we walked back into the interchange. As we walked up we saw required Arriva Midlands 3013 on the #3 to Coton Green. I asked Matthew if he wanted to do this and he said yes. Matthew took a picture of the bus before we walked over to catch the bus.

Arriva Midlands 3013 in Tamworth bus interchange
We got on the bus and we flashed the ticket before sitting down near to the back. The bus set off onto Aldergate and up past the bus garage. We turned into the estate on Salters Lane. Part way along we passed required Arriva Midlands 3010 on the #3A service. AS we carried on through the estate we the bus emptied out a little and Matthew took a picture of the empty seats opposite us.

Inside Arriva Midlands 3013
When we passed the Coton Arms we jumped up to get off the bus. AS the bus headed off into the distance matthew took another picture of Arriva Midlands 3013.

Arriva Midlands 3013 in Coton Green
We walked to the local shops and we went into the Co-operative food store. Matthew brought a small bottle of Irn Bru and a can of Coke for later. He also picked up a Flake and twin pack of Milky Way. We paid for the shopping and walked to the bus stop on the other side of the car park. We had 10 minutes before the return bus so Matthew drank the bottle of Irn Bru. At 16:08 bang on time we saw another Mercedes single decker approaching. As it got closer we saw it was required Arriva Midlands 3010.

Arriva Midlands 3010 in Coton Green
We got on the bus and it was still quite full. We flashed the ticket and we went and sat down near to the back of the bus. The bus set off through the estate and it emptied out as we went By the time we got onto Slaters lane the bus was nearly empty, we had only picked up a handful of passengers. We carried on down past the railway and the bus garage before turning into Corporation Street. We let the bus empty and Matthew took a picture inside Arriva Midlands 3010.

Inside Arriva Midlands 3010
We had time for another quick out and back trip. On the #110 was Arriva Midlands 4408.

Arriva Midlands 4408 in Tamworth bus interchange
We decided to leave the double decker for another future visit. On the #785 to Shuttington was dud Arriva Midlands 3805. On the #765 to Lichfield was dud Arriva Midlands 3809.

Arriva Midlands 3809 in Tamworth bus interchange
We decided to do Arriva Midlands 3809. We got on the bus and flashed our tickets. As the bus was nearly empty Matthew took a picture as we got on this bus.

Inside Arriva Midlands 3809
The bus set of Westwards out of town and onto the A51. We crossed the Coventry Canal and we climbed the hill through Hopwas. We passed the farm at packington with all the free range pigs and we decided we were going to do this bus to the barracks for an approximate 8 minutes wait for the return service. We turned into the barrack and we got up and got off the bus. Matthew took another picture of Arriva Midlands 3809 before it carried on towards Lichfield.

Arriva Midlands 3809 in Whittington
Mattheww wanted to photograph a minibus through the fence of the military base, but as it was an army base we discouraged him from doing this. We only had a short wait and then the bus came around the corner. As the bus got closer we saw it was required Arriva Midlands 3800.

Arriva Midlands 3800 in Whittington
We got on the bus and flashed the ticket. We sat down near to the the back of the bus. We turned back onto the A51 and we climbed the hill past the pig farm and we dropped down the hill through Hopwas. We crossed the river and the Coventry Canal and ran into town along the A51. When we got to the interchange Matthew photographed the empty rear of the bus.

Inside Arriva Midlands 3800
There was just time to get one more picture before we set off home. On a #110 to Birmingham was required Arriva Midlands 4414.

Arriva Midlands 4414 in Tamworth bus interchange
We went to the toiletsbut they had closed for the evening. So we decided to just go home ASAP. We set off onto the A51 and we went West to Lichfield. After a slight error in Lichfoeld we continued West out of town on the A51 until we got to the A515. As this road crosss the A50 we headed North through King's Bromley and Yoxall. Further North close to Draycott in the Clay we saw Midland Classic 87 on the #402 to Burton-on-Trent. We joined the A50 and we went West past Uttoxter. As the A50 tuned near to Blythe bridge we caught up with Waltons short wheelbase coach FN63 PXA. We came off the A50 to check out what was at Z Carz It appears Z Carz no longer park on the spare ground so we turned into Wilow Row to check out what was in the compound. LDV minibus T408 JUX appears tohave left the yard and a few of the other minibuses were parked there, with Mercedes minibus W221 CDN parked near to the front of the yard.

Z Carz W221 CDN in Longton
On the opposite side of the road was Z carz minibus BN03 OVS.

Z Carz BN03 OVS in Longton
We turned back onto the A50 and we came off the A50 at Heron Cross. We traveled through Blurton and we saw First Potteries 42892 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 cake bar. Matthew then chilled out on his computer until bedtime around 00:30...Mark

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