Saturday, 3 October 2015

Trip to Walsall / Bloxwich 03-10-2015















































































BusFromToServiceOperator



4264Walsall St Pauls BSBloxwich, High St (Stop BK)301National Express West Midlands
4021Bloxwich, High St (Stop BK)Mossley, adjacent Tintern Crescent301National Express West Midlands
1436Mossley, adjacent Tintern CrescentBloxwich, Bulls Head (Stop BD)301National Express West Midlands
4017Bloxwich, Bulls Head (Stop BD)Walsall St Pauls BS301National Express West Midlands
30411Walsall St Pauls BSBloxwich, High St (Stop BK)301Rotala Diamond
1447Bloxwich, High St (Stop BK)Mossley, adjacent Tintern Crescent301National Express West Midlands
1641Mossley, adjacent Tintern CrescentWalsall St Pauls BS301National Express West Midlands
1755Walsall St Pauls BSBloxwich, Bloxwich Hospital (Stop BG)302National Express West Midlands
30832Bloxwich, Bloxwich Hospital (Stop BF)Walsall St Pauls BS302Rotala Diamond


Today we decided to visit Walsall, so could take part in the National Express West Midlands 'Heritage bus service'. They were running extra buses on the #301 service from Walsall to Mossley via Bloxwich to the end of 4 bus types in service with the company. We found out about the event as Tony Hunters excellent West Midlands Buses in Photographs website had a picture of the flyer advertising the event on the front page of his website. We didn't do much research for this as we just expected to turn up and catch the buses as they appeared. A quick check of the weather is for a mild day with some sunshine, quite warm for the time of year. Matthew got up around 10:00 and had toast and orange juice for breakfast. We set off just before 12:00 onto the A5035 and we went West towards Trentham. We joined the Northbound A34 and we headed up Whitmore Road and onto the M6 at Junction 15. AS we had never been to Walsall before the plan was to eat at the Truckers Rest on the A5 and then head down the A34 to Walsall. On the M6 we passed a number of vehicle coming the other way. These were 2 Aston Manor coaches, a Prospect coach, Parks of Hamilton/National Express LSK 839, Jounson;s YJ04 GYC & Shearings 106. At junction 12 we left the M6 and we joined the Eastbound A5. Just to the South West of Cannock we pulled over into the Truckers Rest Cafe for a dinner stop. Matthew went to the toilet and we ordered him a breakfast which he washed down with a can of Coke. Once we had finished eating we got back onto the A5 and we travelled East until we got to the A34. We headed South through Bloxwich and we passed National Express West Midlands Optare Spectra's 4020 & 4021 on Mossley bound #301's. When we got to Walsall we had a bit of trouble finding the car park we wanted to park at because it wasn't research properly, but we soon got back on track, parking in the multi storey car park right next to the bus station on St Paul's Street. Once parked up we walked out onto the street and we got a good look at the bus station for the first time. Leaving the bus station up St Pauls Street was National Express West Midlands 857.


NX West Midlands 857 in Walsall bus station
This was followed by National Express West Midlands 4600 on a #529 to Wolverhampton.


NX West Midlands 4600 in Walsall bus station
The bus station design could be described as being like a very big petrol station... It was a large canopy supported on legs with 3 rows of stands underneath it. At the near end of the bus station we saw a former Wardle Transport vehicle. It was required Arriva Midlands 2211 on a #19 to Bloxwich.


Arriva Midlands 2211 in Walsall bus station
The one thing I had researched is where the #301 departed from in the bus station. The buses departed from stand D and E depending on which operator's buses you wanted to catch. We wound our way through the stops and across the crossing towards the stop that we needed. Already on the stop was required National Express West Midlands 4264 on a #301 service.


NX West Midlands 4264 in Walsall bus station
We decided to catch this bus so we could see what else was working the route. We got on the bus and we purchased nBus day tickets at £4.60 each. We went upstairs and we sat down in the middle of the bus. The bus set off out of the bus station and onto Stafford Street. We crossed the ring road and we headed out of town. Stafford Street (B4210) runs parallel to the A34, but serves more housing where the A34 is a fast less built up road. As we left town we passed National Express West Midlands 4020 & 4021 again. Further up the road closer to Bloxwich we passed National Express West Midlands 4017, 1436 & 1447 running together in a short convoy! We rejoined the A34 just South of Bloxwich High Street and a few people got off the bus. Matthew took a picture of the empty seats behind us in National Express West Midlands 4264.


Inside NX West Midlands 4264
When we got to the High Street we waited until the bus turned left into Wolverhampton Road before we got up and got off the bus. Matthew took another picture of National Express West Midlands 4264 before it carried on towards Mossley.


NX West Midlands 4264 in Bloxwich
We got off the bus and Matthew decided he wanted to use the toilet. We crossed over the A34 and we went to the toilet block. The public toilet at Bloxwich is only to be used when desperate... It stinks and the cubicles don't have doors on them. Still, it is slightly better than no toilet. We did not know which direction the next heritage service would run in, so we did not know which side of the road to wait on for the best. Whilst we waited we saw required National Express West Midlands 1756 on a #302 to Walsall.


NX West Midlands 1756 in Bloxwich
As we contemplated what to do we saw an Optare Spectra coming up the high street. The road was busy and we couldn't get across. As it got closer we saw that it was required National Express West Midlands 4020.


NX West Midlands 4020 in Bloxwich
We crossed the road and by the time we had gotten to the stop we saw National Express West Midlands 4020 disappearing into the distance. We decided to wait where we were as a far as we knew all the buses at the Walsall end, with the exception of the bus we just missed. Going the other way was required National Express West Midlands 4293 on a #89 to Walsall.


NX West Midlands 4293 in Bloxwich
A few minutes later we saw an Optare Spectra turn the corner... It was dud National Express West Midlands 4021 on a #301 service.


NX West Midlands 4021 in Bloxwich
We got on the bus and we flashed the nBus day ticket to the driver before we went upstairs and sat down. The bus set off along Wolverhampton Road and we turned right onto Sand Bankk and then left onto Bell Lane. We crossed through some lights at a crossroads and we went forwards onto Sneyd Lane. A few stops up the road we turned right onto Creswell Cresent. We travelled around 1/2 a mile and we could see a main road up ahead. To the right there was a turning circle where 2 buses were lined up. These were National Express West Midlands 4020 and Rotala Diamond 30412. As we pulled up into the turning circle National Express West Midlands 4020 pulled off and went towards Walsall. Our bus pulled up alongside Rotala Diamond 30412 where the other Optare Spectra had stood and the bus terminated. We let the bus empty and Matthew took a picture inside the top deck of National Express West Midlands 4021.


Inside NX West Midlands 4021
We got off the bus and there were around 1/2 dozen other bus enthusiasts taking pictures. Matthew took another picture of National Express West Midlands 4021 alongside the Rotala Diamond bus.


NX West Midlands 4021 in Mossley
Pretty much as soon as we took the picture we turned to see another bus approaching. It was another one of the buses finishing service later in the day, required National Express West Midlands Volvo B10 1436.


NX West Midlands 1436 in Mossley
We got on the bus and we flashed the nBus day ticket to the driver. The rear of the bus was empty so we took a picture inside National Express West Midlands 1436 just as another Optare Spectra pulled up behind us.


Inside NX West Midlands 1436
The bus set off down Cresswell Crescent and we saw another Volvo B10, required National Express West Midlands 1447. At the end of the Crescent we turned left into Sneyd Lane and we carried on back into Bloxwich town centre via Wolverhampton Road. We turned into the high street and we got up and got off the bus. Adjacent to the toilet parked in Park Road was WMSNT Optare Solo 2012.


WMSNT 2012 in Bloxwich
A few minutes later we saw two buses approaching off Wolverhampton Road. National Express West Midlands Volvo B10 1447 had got in front of the other Spectra, which was required National Express West Midlands 4017.


NX West Midlands 1447 in Bloxwich
We let the single decker go by and waited for National Express West Midlands 4017.


NX West Midlands 4017 in Bloxwich
We got on the bus and we flashed the nBus day ticket to the driver before we went upstairs. The rear of the top deck was empty and so Matthew took a picture inside National Express West Midlands 4017.


Inside NX West Midlands 4017
We sat down and the bus set off down the High Street. We turned slight left onto the B4210 and we headed the 2 miles or so into Walsall. We crossed the ring road and we headed into the bus station down St Pauls Street. The bus pulled up on the end of one of the adjacent stands and we got up and got off, before it ran off out of service. In the bus station in front of us was National Express West Midlands 4126.


NX West Midlands 4126 in Walsall bus station
We walked around the bus station whilst we thought about what to do. matthew visited the toilet and then we went next door to the shop. Here we brought some pop and chocolate to fill up the truip bag with supplies as well as a bag of egg sweets. At stand D was required Rotala Diamond 30411.


Rotala Diamond 30411 in Walsall bus station
Around the corner from the bus station were another few stands. National Express West Midlands 6755 was on a #934 to Birmingham.


NX West Midlands 6755 in Walsall bus station
There didn't seem to be any other buses about so we thought we would get back up to Bloxwich on Rotala Diamond 30411. We got on the bus and we flashed the nBus day ticket to the driver before we sat down towards the back of the bus. The bus was filling up quickly and so Matthew took a picture of the empty back seat behind us.


Inside Rotala Diamond 30411
When we got on the bus we spotted a plastic number plate at the front of the bus with the number 1819 on it. This and the buses blue seat moquette gave away the buses origin of the bus as being a former Transdev Lancashire United bus. The bus set off out of the bus station and across the ring road onto Stafford Road. We travelled 2 miles north before joining onto the A34 and running into Bloxwich town centre. We passed along the high street and we waited before the bus turned left onto Wolverhampton Road before we got up and got off the bus. Matthew took another picture of Rotala Diamond 30411.


Rotala Diamond 30411 in Bloxwich
We decided to stay put and wait for the next required bus towards Mossley. Required National Express West Midlands appeared but it was going towards Walsall. A few minutes later dud Arriva Midlands 2733 appeared on a #326 service to Bilston.


Arriva Midlands 2733 in Bloxwich
Whilst we waited we saw National Express West Midlands 4017 & 1436 going back towards Walsall and National Express West Midlands 4021 & 1436 going towards Mossley. This flyer for the event stated that buses would b out until around 16:30 and it was now nearly 16:00. We were beginning to think that there wasn't going to be anything else heritage going up towards Mossley when required National Express West Midlands 1447 came around the corner.


NX West Midlands 1447 in Bloxwich
We got on the bus and we flashed the nBus ticket to the driver before sitting down towards the back of the bus. There were a few familiar faces on the bus including the dog that appeared on the Cheshire Champion tour back in June 2015! We set off onto the Westbound A4124 before turning right onto Cresswell Crescent and to the turning circle at the end of the road. We got of the bus and the dog somehow got into a fight with a local Pit Bull, with the Pit Bull own having to pick his dog up by the harness and swing it around out of the way to stop the dogs from going at each other. Matthew got another picture of National Express West Midlands 1447 as it carried on towards Walsall.


NX West Midlands 1447 in Mossley
Also at the terminus was Rotala Diamond Plaxton Centro 30825 on a #301 to Walsall.


Rotala Diamond 30825 in Mossley
A few people decided to catch this bus back towards Walsall and we had wondered if the service had now stop running. A few others stayed and these looked like they knew what they were doing. In the distance we saw the first Mercedes single decker that we had seen today. As it got closer we saw that it was required National Express West Midlands 1641.


NX West Midlands 1641 in Mossley
We got on the bus and we flashed the nBus day ticket to the driver. We sat down towards the back of the bus and National Express West Midlands 4021 pulled up behind us. We decided that this was probably the last new heritage bus that we were going to be able to get today, so we decided to do this through to Walsall. The bus set off back down the Crescent and turned right onto the main road. We entered Bloxwich town centre along Wolverhampton Road and we turned right into the High Street. At the bottom of the high Street we veered of to the left onto Stafford Road and we ran the 2 miles or so into Walsall. We crossed the ring road and entered the bus station passing National Express West Midlands 4603 along St Pauls Street. The bus emptied out except for one person who wanted to take a picture inside this bus just like Matthew. Its not very often Matthew has competition! They both took a picture inside National Express West Midlands 1641 before getting off.


Inside NX West Midlands 1641
It was now nearly 17:00... Mum needed us back at the car before 17:45 because of the parking, we considered what to do next whilst Matthew went to the toilet. We walked around the outside of the office and we saw Walsall Radio Cars MF52 PPK go by.


Walsall Radio Cars MF52 PPK in Walsall bus station
There was a raised walkway that overlooked the stops outside the bus station, whilst we were there we saw National Express West Midlands 4327 on a #77 to Sutton Coldfield.


NX West Midlands 4327 in Walsall bus station
We walked back inside the bus station and we saw required National Express West Midlands 1755 on a #302 to Lower Farm.


NX West Midlands 1755 in Walsall bus station
We decided to do this bus up to Bloxwich for something back. We got on bus and we flashed the nBus ticket to the driver before we sat down towards the back of the bus. Before the bus filled up Matthew took a picture inside National Express West Midlands 1755.


Inside NX West Midlands 1755
We set off out of the bus station and we passed National Express West Midlands 4598 on a #529 service. We crossed the ring road onto Stafford Road and we travelled up to the Southern edge of Bloxwich where we got up and got off the bus. We got off the bus and Matthew took another picture of National Express West Midlands 1755 as it carried on towards Lower Farm.


NX West Midlands 1755 in Bloxwich
We crossed over the road and we waited at the opposite bus stop. We didn't have to wait long before we saw a walsall bound bus approaching. It was required Rotala Diamond 30832 on a #302 service.


Rotala Diamond 30832 in Bloxwich
We got on the bus and we flashed the nBus day ticket to the driver for the final time today before sitting down towards the back of the bus. The bus set off down B4210 and into Walsall. As we approached the bus station we passed National Express West Midlands 1436 going out again on a #301 service. When we got to the bus station we let bus empty and Matthew took a picture inside Rotala Diamond 30832.


Inside Rotala Diamond 30832
As it was now getting late we decided to take a few pictures before going back to the car. it was National Express West Midlands 4597 On a #529 to Wolverhampton.


NX West Midlands 4597 in Walsall bus station
This was followed by National Express West Midlands 1763 on a #29 to Blakenall.


NX West Midlands 1763 in Walsall bus station
After that we saw National Express West Midlands 4125 on a #89 to Wolverhampton


NX West Midlands 4125 in Walsall bus station
We walked around the corner into Hatherton Road which appeared to be a place where vehicle lay over. There were a couple of Arriva Midlands buses parked here. First in the row was required Arriva Midlands Enviro200 2147.


Arriva Midlands 2147 in Walsall
Behind this was required Arriva Midlands 3705.


Arriva Midlands 3705 in Walsall
On the opposite side of the road was a bus stop where there was a bus service to the Amazon Distribution Centre. It was being worked by National Express West Midlands 4300.


NX West Midlands 4300 in Walsall
In front of the bus was a coach, also bound for the Amazon Distribution Centre was Fastline coach FC03 MDN.


Fastline FC03 MDN in Walsall
We walked back to the car and mum was waiting with sausage Greggs rolls. Matthew washed his down with a bottle of Irn Bru. Once in the car we headed out of the car park onto Hatherton Road and forwards onto Hatherton Street. We joined the ring road for a short while before going onto the Northbound A34. We passed through Bloxwich and North through Great Wyrley towards Cannock. When we crossed the M6 toll road, I spotted a sign for the M6 which I had seen before when passing this junction, so today decided to take it see where it went to. It was the A460, and it ran parallel to the M6 toll road right up to the the M6 junction 11. We got onto the Northbound M6 and we made good time running through the roadworks and up to Junction 15 where we joined the Northbound A500. At Sideway we went East following Happy Days Coaches 209 & 226 towards the Britannia Stadium which was carrying Stoke fans returning from Aston Villa. We carried on to Longton along the A50 and we came off to have a look what was parked up at Z Carz this evening. Unusually, The nearest bus was Z carz green Ford minibus T418 WYJ.


Z Carz T418 WYJ in Longton
Also present was Z Carz Iveco minibus HX51 HRU which is receiving some attention. Closest bus in the second row was Z Carz Mercedes minibus M372 NWN.


Z Carz M372 NWN in Longton
We turned left into Willow Row to see what was n the compound this evening. The closest bus to the gate was Z Carz maroon coloured Volkswagen minibus S973 OVP.


Z Carz S973 OVP in Longton
We rejoined the A50 and we went up to Heron Cross. We turned left onto Blurton Road and we went onto Church Road and into Beaconsfield Drive. We got home around 18:20. For a late tea we had bangers and mash with carrots followed by a jam filled shortbread biscuit. Matthew then chilled out on his computer until bedtime around 00:30... Mark

No comments:

Post a Comment