Edited by John Podgorski, BA Hons, MSC, CMILT.
Welcome to the July 2018 edition of Busmopolitan.
The news this month is dominated by major changes at First Essex. Clacton depot and Braintree outstation closed at the end of July, with just four operating centres remaining, at Basildon, Chelmsford, Colchester and Hadleigh. 40 years ago (in 1978), First’s predecessor, Eastern National Omnibus Company, had 16 garages. The bus industry now works in a very different world.
A2B BUS AND COACH, CAMBRIDGE.
From 28/7/18, Cambs CC routes 31 (Barley-Cambridge) and 75 (Wrestingworth-Cambridge) were taken over from Whippet. Ensignbus loaned ADL/E200 LJ56 ONS initially, while two ex Abellio London E200s (LJ56 VSY/Z) were supplied by Ensign. Ex First Essex are Optare Solos EO02 NFG/J.
AIR FORCE ONE.
Visited Stansted again on 12/7/18, to deliver US President and First Lady Trump for their official visit to the UK. The B747 has last been at the Essex airport in April 2016, when President Obama came over.
ARRIVA KENT THAMESIDE (COLCHESTER).
Above: Volvo B7RLE/Wright Solar Eclipse 3825 on North Station Road, Colchester, on 7/7/18. The B7RLEs are regular on routes 8 and 133. (John Podgorski).
ARRIVA LONDON NORTH.
Above: The original New Routemaster, LT1 – at the Basildon Bus Rally, Barleylands, on 22/7/18. (Daniel Pretty).
Withdrawn is Volvo B10M R486 UFP.
Above: New Routemaster LT402 at Blackwall station on 30/6/18. This is one of the batch transferred from Stagecoach East London with TfL route 15. (John Podgorski).
BLUELINE TRAVEL, ROCHFORD.
The O licence was revoked from 30/7/18, due to “loss of good repute”. However, operations continued on a new O licence and new TM, from 31/7/18.
Above: Blueline runs a small but varied fleet, although most vehicles are not blue ! V42 MOA is one of some ex NX West Midlands Volvo B7TL/Plaxton Presidents operated, and was seen at Newbury Park on 27/8/17. (John Podgorski).
From Carousel are ADL/Enviro 200/MCV Evolutions 267 (AY58 AZV), 268 (AE59 AWM).
Transferred to Hedingham are Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointer 260 (EU56 FLR) and ADL/Enviro 200 261 (EY57 FZE).
Scania Omnidekka 802 (YN55 PZD) was loaned to Hedingham at Sible Hedingham in early July, in exchange for 800 (YN53 RYP). 800 returned to Hedingham on loan on 12/7/18; but by the end of July, 800 and 801 had been swapped again. On 19/7/18, 809 (YN55 PZM) returned from Hedingham Kelvedon, in exchange for 811 (YN55 PZP).
Volvo B7TL/Plaxton President 568 (W458 WGH) was loaned to Hedingham at Kelvedon in mid July and was returned on the 23rd. Omnidekka 811 followed shortly afterwards.
From 23/7/18, route 89X (Sudbury-Halstead-Braintree) came back here for the school holidays.
Sold to Alpha Recovery, Weetslade for scrap are Volvo B10M/VH 3 (M656 KVU) and long term VOR Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointer 252 (EU03 BZK). The latter had been partially cannibalised following an engine failure.
COACH STOP, RETTENDON.
Mb 0404/Hispano W391 PRC is ex Freeway of Hook.
2/7/18: 70814 on 6L37 Hoo Junct-Whitemoor.
4/7/18: 70814 on 6L37.
5/7/18: 66846 on 6L37.
10/7/18: 60002 on 6L44 Oxwellmains-West Thurrock cement. GBRf 66785 on 6L36.
11/7/18: 37025 on NR test train at Colchester.
12/7/18: 60002 on 6L44.
16/7/18: 66846 on 6L37.
18/7/18: 37099 tnt 37254 on NR test train on Mannigtree-Harwich branch.
19/7/18: 60002 on 6L44. 66846 on 6L37.
20/7/18: 66849 on 6L37.
24/7/18; 70809 ‘Oakley’ on 6L44.
25/7/18: 66850 on Whitemoor-Hoo Junct light engine.
31/7/18: 60002 on 6L44.
The Yutong E10 electric demonstrator (YG18 CVS), has arrived here from Tower Transit. It will be used on TfL W13 (Leytonstone-Woodford Wells).
Above: The Yutong E10 at the Basildon Bus Rally, Barleylands, on 22/7/18. (Daniel Pretty).
5/7/18: 66103 on Harlow Mill-Mountsorrel. 66182 on 4L08 Wakefield-London Gateway.
9/7/18: 66096 on 6K96 Acton-Dagenham.
11/7/18: 66106 at Marks Tey sand yard.
16/7/18: 59204 at Bow Midland.
23/7/18: 66192 on Trowse-Acton stone train via GEML.
24/7/18: 59102 on 6L21 Wheatley-Dagenham. 66152 on 6M67 Broxbourne-Mountsorrel.
Above: Unit 57 departs Stratford on 14/7/18. It is 31 years ago this month that the DLR was officially opened by HM The Queen. (John Podgorski).
Withdrawn is Scania Omnicity ‘decker 963.
5/7/18: 37601 + 345027 on Old Oak-Gidea Park ECS.
9/7/18: 37407 hauling GA DVT 82118 on 5Z37 Norwich-Cardiff via GEML and NLL.
17/7/18: 37409 hauled 3 MkIII carriages as 5V91 Norwich-Ilford ECS.
19/7/18: 37038 towed GA 90007 + MkIII carriage on 5Z07 Norwich-Bounds Green. 37409 on 5V91 Norwich-Ilford ECS with 5 MkIIIs.
24/7/18: 37405 dragging failed 90 + DVT set London-Norwich as 5P99.
25/7/18: 37038 on Norwich-Bounds Green through Ipswich @ 0949.
New are Airbus A320-214s G-EZGX/Z, A320-251n G-UZHI, UZMA.
Ex Metroline is ADL/Enviro 200 720 (YX09 FLD).
BCI Enterprise 402 (LX17 DZC) is delicensed due to serious accident damage. It was in collision with a DAF LF55 scaffolding lorry on the A120 near Elmstead Market, while on a Tottenham-Clacton private charter on 3/7/18. Fortunately, no one was seriously hurt.
Above; Volvo B5H/Wright Gemini2 502 at Tilbury Civic Square, during the late evening of 8/6/18. (Daniel Disbury).
Below: Volvo B9TL/Wright Gemini2 130 at Tower Hill on 1/7/18; on RRP service A for LUL District Line to Barking. (Simon Austin).
Above: Ex Metrobus Scania Omnidekka YN53 RYB, is one of several put temporarily into the rail replacement fleet; mainly to cover e rail for GTR, after their timetable change problems. It was pictured at Purfleet depot on 30/6/18, with Volvo B9TL/Wright Gemini2 131. (John Podgorski).
EOS LONDON, NORTH WEALD.
Withdrew its commercial bus routes 66 (Waltham Cross-Waltham Abbey-Loughton-Debden Circular), 86 (Harlow-Waltham Cross), 87 (Epping Forest-Loughton-Epping-Harlow) after 31/7/18. Arriva replaced these. S1 (Harlow-Stratford City) ceased without replacement. 13 (Waltham Cross-Upshire-Epping), 61 (Blackmore-Doddinghurst-Brentwood), 66A (Waltham Cross-Waltham Abbey-Loughton-Debden Circular – Suns/Hols only), 133 (Abridge-Chigwell Row-Debden Park High School – schooldays only) continued, under the Swallow Coach Company name.
Ensignbus open top Routemaster RM371 made a guest appearance on 31st July.
Above: Ex Go-Ahead Docklands Buses ADL/Enviro 200/MCV LX07 BYN, at High Street, Brentwood on 21/7/18. (Simon Austin).
Above: RM371 at Loughton rail station, on the final day of EOS operation. (Tony Smethers).
Above: “Flagship” coach Volvo B11R/Sunsundegui M60 FXO, at Ipswich rail station on 24/7/18, on GA rail replacement. (John Podgorski).
FIRST EASTERN COUNTIES (IPSWICH).
Above: ADL/Enviro 200 44928 at Ipswich rail station on Sunday, 15/7/18. It is on service 202 which serves the Shotley Peninsular. This route is Suffolk CC supported and had previously been operated by Ipswich Buses. (John Podgorski).
Above; Eastern Counties Omnibus Company used to have a garage at Shotley, worked as an outstation of Ipswich. This post closure view dates from August 2003. (John Podgorski).
Odd sightings: 24/7/18: B7TL/ALX400 32493 on 7X – pm. 26/7/18: Park and Ride ADL/E300 67760 (SN62 AUC) on X66 pm peak.
Above: Clacton depot yard on 5/5/18. (John Podgorski).
Below: A smart looking Scania L94UB/Wright Solar – no 62407, awaits departure from Colchester back to Clacton, on 7/7/18. (Simon Austin).
Above: Scania L94UB/Wright Solar 65684 on the first day of route 98. At Colchester on 30/7/18. (Daniel Pretty).
Clacton depot and Braintree outstation closed on 28th July 2018. Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointer 42927 (SN05 EAF) was the last bus in, off route 17.
In the case of Clacton, services 3 (Clacton-Harwich), 4/A, 5/A, 6 passed to Hedingham Omnibuses. The other Clacton routes are now run from Colchester (CR), with 15 buses and 26 staff transferred over. The Scanias (65028-32, 62407-10, 65675/88-92) went to CR and the Dart SLFs (42555-59, 42918/22/23/27/28/37, 43845/46) to Chelmsford (CF). The CF transfers allowed all of the Caetano SLFs to be concentrated at Basildon (BN). Essex CC 2 (Clacton-Mistley) passed to Panther Travel on subcontract. New routes 97/A (Colchester-A133-Clacton) replaced 76/A; new service 98 (Colchester-B1027-Clacton) replaced 74. 97/A are extended from Clacton to Walton over the old 7, while 98 is similarly extended over the old 8. However, on Sundays and holidays, routes 74A and 76 continue unchanged, but there is a new 99 route between Holland band Clacton on those days. Also, 7, 8, 74B continue unchanged on M-Sat evenings. Meanwhile, route 62A was extended from Wivenhoe to Brightlingsea, to give a combined 15 minute core frequency with 62.
Braintree’s share of 70 (Colchester-Braintree-Chelmsford) went to Chelmsford and 352 (M-Sat evenings only) (Chelmsford-Braintree-Halstead) passed to Hedingham Omnibuses; the Sun/hol 352s continue to be run by First from CF. The closing allocation at BE was B7TLs 32484/5 (AU53 HKB/C), 32654 (AU05 MUW) and B7RLE/Wright 66719 (WX54 XDC). 65654 was the last service bus into BE, off route 352. At the time of closure, BMC yellow school buses 68508/9/10 (KX54 AHU/Y, ANR), 68532 (LK54 FNE) were also parked up at BE – withdrawn.
Above: Volvo B7TL/Alexander ALX400 32652 at Braintree Bus Park on the 352, on 1/7/17. (Simon Austin).
Four 51 plate Scania L94UB/Wrights Solars remained active at the start of July; 65672/73/77 (SN51 UYE/G/L) – at Colchester (CR) and 65675 (SN51 UYJ) at CN. 65670 (SN51 UYC) has been donated to a local school for static use. 65748 (SN55 JVK) has been repaired and is to return to Scotland.
Hadleigh (HH) Dennis Trident/Plaxton President 33133 (LT02 ZBZ) was running from Chelmsford (CF), on schools in mid/late July.
Now with Contactless branding are Wright Streetlite 63333 (SK65 PXO), Volvo B7RLE/Wright 66719 (WX54 XDC).
Optare Solos 53125/27 (EO02 NFG/J) have passed to A2B Bus & Coach, Cambridge.
Odd sightings: 2/7/18: Route 62 B9TL/Gemini 37134 (SN57 HCP) on 75; Streetlite 63335 (SK65 PXS) on 17 bus 2 pm. 18/7/18; SLF/Caetano 41494 (LK03 LLZ) on 71. 19/7/18: X30 ADL/E200 MMC 67167 (YY66 PBV) on 31X. 21/7/18: B7TL/ALX400 32481 (AU53 HJY) on 66. 24/7/18: Route 62 B9TL 37139 (SN57 HCY) on 75. 26/7/18: Trident 33088 (LN51 GMU) on 62B. 29/7/18: Trident 37088 on 1A (Sunday). 30/7/18: Streetlite 63335 (SK65 PXS) on 103.
Above: The number of buses serving Brightlingsea was increased at the end of July, with the extension of 62A from Wivenhoe during the day and 62B on evenings/Sundays. Volvo B9TL/Wright Gemini2 37134 was seen at the top of North Station Road, Colchester on the evening of 7/7/18. The destination has not been reset for the return trip, as it had finished its duty, and was running light back to Haven Road depot. (John Podgorski).
Above: Scania Omnicity 65031 at Colchester bus station on the last day of Clacton depot operations – 28/7/18. (John Podgorski).
Below: Still showing the destination of its final journey for Clacton depot, Omnicity 65029 on transfer from CN to Colchester on 29/7/18, and approaching its new base along Haven Road. To the right is the old First depot; replaced by the current one at Quayside in 2015, (along with Queen Street and Magdalen Street). (Simon Austin).
Above: Ex Clacton buses congregate in Colchester depot on 29/7/18. (Daniel Pretty).
Above: Braintree outstation on 28/7/18, also it’s last day of operation. (John Podgorski).
Above: Scania L94UB/Wright Solar 65687 on the first day of route 97. Osborne Street, Colchester on 30/7/18. (Daniel Pretty).
Graham’s Coaches of Kelvedon was acquired on 1/7/18.
Mercedes Sprinter GK03 JUC has received the new style of livery, while retaining its silver base colour.
Above: Early in the morning on 3/7/18, Mb 0814D S190 SLL is at Halstead depot, getting ready for a school run. In the background is freshly repainted Mb Sprinter GK03 JUC. This site was acquired with the business of Florida Coaches. (Michelle Toon).
14 of the Class 70s were stored unserviceable, by the start of July – out of a fleet of 20. 70014 is pictured (above) at Ipswich on 24/7/18.
5/7/18: 70014 – one of 6 currently serviceable – on GEML seen Chelmsford. 86639/07 on 4M87 Crewe-FLX.
7/7/18: 66528/97/99 on Ipswich-Toton light engine.
8/7/18: 66585 stabled at Parkeston Quay.
16/7/18: 66545 tnt 66957 on Parkeston-Brentwood engineers.
20/7/18: 86609/12 on 4L41 Basford Hall-FLX. 70008 on 4L97 Trafford Park-FLX.
22/7/18: 86607/13/14/37 stabled at Ipswich.
24/7/18: 66546 trailing UID ’66 on “up” intermodal through Ipswich (on centre road) @ 2005. 86608 and partner stabled at bottom of Ipswich Upper Yard, mid evening.
31/7/18: 66415 tnt 66553 on HOBC at Colchester.
Above: 66585 at Parkeston Quay on 8/7/18. (John Podgorski).
Below: 86608 and friend at Ipswich on 24/7/18. (John Podgorski).
Accident damaged Volvo B9R/Caetano Levante FN62 CAA has been sold (by auction) via Malcolm Harrison, Market Drayton (dealer). It is repairable salvage.
Above: More Galloway buses are receiving a simplified livery of blue/white, ex light blue/yellow/white. Optare Solo SR YJ65 EWF was at Ipswich rail station on 24/7/18. It is actually awaiting departure on service 114 to Diss. (John Podgorski).
1/7/18: 66718 on 6T66, 66765 on 6T63, 66768 on 6T64, 66775 on 6T62 all Whitemoor-Barking engineers. 66762/68/75 on 0L33 Peterborough-Ipswich light engine.
2/7/18: 66720 on 4L22 Hams Hall-Felixstowe. 66753 on Harwich-N Walsham tanks. 66763 on 4Z81 Masboro-Felixstowe. Ex DBS 66789 on 6Y34 Whitemoor-Parkeston.
3/7/18: 66753 on N Walsham-Harwich tanks. Large BR Logo 66789 on rear on 6H33 Parkeston Quay-Whitemoor.
4/7/18; 66720 on 4L22. 66753 light engine “up” trough Stowmarket @ 1529. 66789 on 6H33.
5/7/18: 66753 on N Walsham-Harwich tanks. 66778 on 6M14 Chesterton Junct-Bardon Hill.
6/7/18: Ex DBS 66784 ‘Keighley and Worth Valley Railway’ tnt 66721 on 6T62 Whitemoor-Lea Bridge enginers.
7/7/18: 66706 tnt 66742 on 6T60. 66730 on 6T64. Both on engineers past Broxbourne.
8/7/18: 66707/62 on 0L33. 66718 ‘Sir Peter Hendy CBE’ stabled at Parkeston Quay.
10/7/18; 66753/83 on 6H33 Parkeston-Whitemoor.
12/7/18: 66775 on N Walsham-Harwich tanks.
14/7/18: 66778 tnt 66753 on 6T62 Whitemoor-Enfield Lock engineers.
16/7/18: 66761/62 on 0L33.
17/7/18: 66775 on Ipswich-N Walsham light engine and returned on 6A32 N Walsham-Harwich tanks.
19/7/18: 66742 at Cambridge North.
20/7/18: 66761 on “up” intermodal through Kelvedon @ 1225. 66776 tnt 66778 on 6T60 Whitemoor-Tottenham Hale engineers.
21/7/18: 66775 on Ipswich-N Walsham light engine.
23/7/18: 66720 on 4M29. 66779 on 0P41 Ipswich-Parkeston light engine. Ex DBS 66781 on 4R03 Parkeston-FLX; then on 4M02.
24/7/18: 66749/30 at Romford ETE on 6X01 electrification train to Liverpool Street. 66779 on IPS-N Walsham light engine. Ex DBS 66781 on 4L02 Hams Hall-FLX North and return on 4M02.
25/7/18: 66708 on 6O14 Harlow Mill-Tonbridge. 66714 on Harwich-N Walsham tanks. 66779 on 6H33 Harwich-Whitemoor.
26/7/18: 66779 on IPS-N Walsham light engine.
28/7/18: 66708 at Bethnal Green. 66730 at Romford OHLM. 66762 tnt 66784 at Bethnal Green on engineers. 66779 at Liverpool Street on 6T60 engineers from Whitemoor.
30/7/18: 66730 still at Romford ETE. 66749/31/86 on 6L36 Whitemoor-Hoo Junct.
31/7/18: ‘Rainbow’ 66720 on 4L22. 66730 on 6U13 Romford ETE-Gidea Park. 66764 + ex DBS 66786 on 6L36. Ex DBS 66784 ‘Keighley and Worth Valley Railway’ on Ipswich-N Walsham light engine.
Above: 66718 at Parkeston Quay on 8/7/18. (John Podgorski).
New is Mb Tourismo BD18 TMZ. Currently in plain white. It was quickly re-registered CC18 PGC.
Scania K380EB6/Irizar YN07 LKD ex T123 PGC has passed to Evobus (dealer), Coventry.
GRAHAM’S OF KELVEDON.
Has been sold to Flagfinders.
Graham’s was founded by Gary Ellis in 1976. Since 2014 it had been run by his sons Graham Ellis and Michael Ellis, but Graham passed away in March 2018.
Graham’s and Flagfinders already had a cordial relationship, with work being subcontracted between the two.
Above: Graham’s Irizar i6 YN66 VYG at Balkerne Hill, Colchester on 8/12/16, when still quite new. This was sold to Cooks of Westcliff prior to Graham’s selling out. Behind are Mb Sprinter VU53 FYR and Scania/Irizar T361 JWA. (John Podgorski).
All Class 321/4s are here, except 321401 at Kilmarnock, 321404 at Doncaster, 321448 at Wabtec and the ones that were converted to Class 320s for use in Scotland.
153314 has gone to LORAM, Derby RTC for fitment of wheelslip protection. It’s sisters will be modified “in house” at GA.
On 19/7/18, it was announced that the industrial dispute about the future role of guards had been resolved. Since October 2017, there had been 10 one day strikes in connection with this. There had been concerns that the introduction of the new fleet of Stadtler trains from 2019 would dispense with the need for guards, but they will continue to be present, although there will be a greater element of customer service to their role. Most importantly, the guard role will continue to be classed as safety critical.
Above: A smartly presented 90012 ‘Royal Anglian Regiment’ heads the Norwich-Liverpool Street into Colchester, at 1503 on 7/7/18. The pointwork sections are painted white to dissipate heat and reduce expansion. (John Podgorski).
6/7/18: 90015 on Norwich-Crewe light engine.
7/7/18: 156418 on Marks Tey-Sudbury, instead of the usual ‘153.
11/7/18: 90011 on 0Z90 Norwich-Crewe light engine via GEML.
12/7/18: 321402 + 348 on 1P24 1130 London-Norwich. 321311/54/15 on 1P48 1930 Norwich-London.
14/7/18; 153306 + 153322 on Norwich-Sheringhams.
15/7/18: 153306 + 153322 arrived at Ipswich, Platform 4C @ 1830 on an unknown working from the Cambridge direction.
18/7/18: 321360/430 on 1P04 London-Norwich due to stock shortage.
24/7/18: 90006 + 82132 arrived at Ipswich Platform 3 “wrong line” @ 2020 as ECS, and then departed as 2041 to Norwich. 90010 + 82102 working “wrong line” and calling at Ipswich Platform 3 @ 2143 on Norwich-Liverpool Street. 317514 + 317669 on 1950 Ipswich-Liverpool Street. 321434 + 321342 on Norwich-Liverpool Street calling at Ipswich @ 2015. There had been problems on the Diss-Norwich part of the GEML earlier that day.
Above: 153306 leads 153322 into Ipswich on 15/7/18. (John Podgorski).
Above: 90010 heads the 2143 Norwich-Liverpool Street “wrong line” into Ipswich, Platform 3 on 24/7/18. (John Podgorski).
Above: 321355 heads a London bound service into Chelmsford, on 1/7/18. (Simon Austin).
HADLEIGH COMMUNITY TRANSPORT.
Above: Fiat Ducato SF16 JCV enters Ranelagh Road, Ipswich on 24/7/18; on a 90 working, which operates on evenings and Suns/hols only. The rest of the time, Beestons serves this route, with its commercial 91 through to Sudbury. (John Podgorski).
Above: On the recently introduced service 1 to St Osyth Beach; Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointer 253 at Pier Avenue, Clacton, on 7/7/18. (Simon Austin).
The closure of the First Essex Clacton depot on 28/7/18, has meant Hedingham is now the dominant operator in this seaside town.
Above: A pre Go-Ahead (2007) view of Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointer L348 (now 260) at Brook Retail Park. Route 136 was a predecessor of 130. (John Podgorski).
From 1/7/18, there were timing changes to the following services:
X76 (Clacton-Colchester), 87 (Brightlingsea-Colchester), 88 (Colchester-Halstead/Great Yeldham), 89 (Great Yeldham-Braintree), 137 (Clacton-Burrsville Circular). 130 (Jaywick-Clacton-Brook Retail Park) was withdrawn.
Operation of the Toppesfield School contract ceased after the end of term, 20/7/18, and the hired Ford Transit minibus was returned to Robertsons.
From 23/7/18, operation of route 89X (Braintree-Halstead-Sudbury) returned to Chambers and some route 63 duties moved from CN to HD. This brought the sight of B7TL/Geminis in West Mersea. From 30/7/18 – for 8 weeks, Inworth Road was closed to large vehicles, necessitating a lengthy diversion (via Marks Tey) to link opposite ends of route 91 (Witham-Tollesbury). A temporary revised timetable was introduced for the duration. Passengers for Inworth advised to pre book Arrow taxi, to feed into 91 at Feering or Tiptree, (2 hours minimum notice required). This was due to strengthening works on Hines Bridge.
From 29/7/18, the following Essex CC evening contracts were gained from First:
17/18 (Clacton-Point Clear).
Also from 30/7/18, ex First 3 (Clacton-Harwich), 4/A (Jaywick-Clacton-Bockings Elm/Burrsville), 5/A (Clacton-Flatford Drive), 6 (Clacton-St Osyth/Point Clear). There have been minor adjustments to these routes. There were reductions to 4/A as some journeys were duplicated by X76. Some CN duties on 63, 82/83 and all of the remaining CN 15s moved to KN as a result.
Ex Carousel Buses classic ADL/Enviro 200 266 (OU57 FKB) has been acquired for this extra work. It joins the previously reported ex Stagecoach Solos.
Also from Carousel are ADL/Enviro 200/MCV Evolutions AJ58 PZS, AE59 AWM; but these are destined for Chambers. They were initially delivered to Clacton and Sible Hedingham respectively. Another ex London Volvo B7TL/Wright Gemini is ex WVL193 (LX05 EZK) – but this is for spares recovery only. From Chambers are SLF/Pointer 260 (EU56 FLR) – now at CN, and ADL/Enviro 200 261 (EY57 FZE), now at HD. Transferred from Sible Hedingham to Clacton is SLF/Pointer 258 (EU56 FLN).
Above: AE59 AWM at Sible Hedingham depot on 20/7/18. (John Podgorksi).
Short ADL/Enviro 200 295 (SN10 CCX) has received fleet livery.
Scania Omnidekka 802 (YN55 PZD) was on loan from Chambers (at HD) in early July, replacing 800 (YN53 RYP), which returned on 12/7/18. At KN, 809 (YN55 PZM) was exchanged with Chambers 811 (YN55 PZP) on 19/7/18, but 811 was returned w/c 22nd July. 818 returned to KN on 24/7/18, with 816 going back to CN.
Volvo B7TL/Plaxton President 568 (W458 WGH) was borrowed from Chambers in mid July, for use at KN; it was returned on 23rd July. 576 (W517 WGH) suffered a major engine failure on 17/7/18 and parked up at KN; it was towed away for repair w/c 22/7/18. 584 (PJ02 REU) has entered traffic at CN following single door conversion.
Dennis Trident/Alexander ALX400 743 (X386 NNO) is withdrawn. It was last used on ST4 on 20/7/18. Previously withdrawn Trident/EL 717 (T817 RFG) has been further cannibalised at CN. Trident/ALX400 739 (T117 DBW) has gone to Alpha Recovery for scrap.
Above: Parts being recovered from withdrawn Trident/ALX400 739 (T117 DBW) at Sible Hedingham depot, on 12/7/18. (John Podgorski).
Above: Volvo B10M/Plaxton Premiere coach no 5 at Sible Hedingham depot on 12/6/18. They are proposed to be eventually replaced by ex Konect Scania Omnicities. (Laurence Kinsella-Ilot).
Below: Cab view of no 5, with the manual gear change taking centre stage. (Laurence Kinsella-Ilot).
Above: Although delivered to Hedingham in October 2017, ADL/Enviro 200 no 297 was not used there, and quickly moved on to Konect (on loan) – for use on ex Anglian services. Here it is at Norwich bus station on 16/6/18. The ex Anglian bases at Ellough and New Rackheath currently remain open. (Simon Austin).
Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointer 251 (PJ02 RHE) was back at Kelvedon (KN) from 3/7/18, but departed again on 20/7/18, due to technical issues.
Odd sightings: 7/7/18: Short ADL/E200 293 on X76/87; Scania Omnicity 850 on X76/87.
9/7/18: Omnicity ‘decker 850 on 63. 10/7/18: Short ADL/E200 294 on X76/87. 16/7/18: 850 on 63. 19/7/18: Short ADL/E200 296 on 15 + 63; Trident 738 (T108 DBW) on PL3. 21/7/18: B7TL/President 577 on 50A/63 Saturday duty.
Ex Carters ADL/Enviro 200/MCV Evolution 156 (AY60 BVD) is now in fleet colours.
Above: 156 at Tower Ramparts Bus Station on 8/7/18. (John Podgorski).
Scania N280UG/Enviro 400 500 (DD16 GAS) was returned to Scania in mid July.
Dennis Trident/Alexander ALX400 13 (LG02 FDF) was withdrawn at the end of July, havivng latterly seen only limited use. Also withdrawn is Trident no 20.
Scania Omnicity ‘decker 46 (YR61 RPX) is now in fleet livery ex red and converted to single door.
Scania Omnidekka 60 (PJ54 YZT) has a super rear advert for Ipswich Buses Recruitment.
The remaining Optare Excels are to be usually found on routes 13 (Ipswich-Chantry) M-Sat.
Odd sightings: 24/7/18; Trident 13 (LG02 FDF) on 15. 25/7/18: Omnicity ‘decker 45 (YR61 RVE) on Ipswich Tour. 26/7/18: Omnicity ‘decker 42 (YR61 RVJ) on 97; SLF/EL 88 (PJ53 OLK) on 93.
Above: Omnicity no 45 on the Ipswich Tour; seen at the rail station. (John Podgorski).
Below: And the usual tour traction; Leyland Atlantean/Roe no 9. Pictured on 27/7/18. (John Podgorski).
New is Mb Tourismo tri-axle BD18 TMU.
KINGS TOURS, STANWAY.
Temsa Safari YJ13 GWC returned to Arriva (dealer), Wellingborough, off loan after failing and was replaced on 10/7/18 by ex Bibbys Temsa Safari HD12 YJ15 ETL. Also on hire during July was ex BM Coaches, Hayes VH T915 Alicron AC10 BMC, from Arriva (dealer) at Cleckheaton. Both AC10 BMC and YJ15ETL were returned to Arriva at Wellingborough, later in July.
At the end of this month, Irizar i6 YJ18 CLN was borrowed from Irizar (dealer) at Worksop.
L&R TRANSPORT, BASILDON.
Withdrawn is Volvo B10M/Plaxton Excalibur L975 OWY.
LODGE, HIGH EASTER.
Above: Ex Blackpool Transport originally Bus Vanin, Isle of Man Dennis Trident/EL E14 BTS, at the Basildon Bus Rally, Barleylands on 22/7/18. (Daniel Pretty).
Above: Electrostar 378209 calls at Shepherds Bush on 7/7/18, on the 1817 Clapham Junction-Stratford service. (John Podgorski).
315813 is withdrawn following a shunting accident.
18/7/18: 378135 visited Ilford depot.
Above: S7 Stock 20501 arrives at Latimer Road on 7/7/18, on a Hammersmith-Barking Hammermith and City Line service. This date was the 13th anniversary of the London suicide bombings; 3 of which were on the Underground. (John Podgorski).
The title MM Travel has been introduced.
Neoplan Tourliner MX10 DFK has been re-registered MM10 BUS.
Work other than rail replacement is also being done.
Above: MM10 BUS at Derby on 4/7/18. This was there for a staff training day, rather than rail replacement. (James Sadd).
MTR CROSSRAIL (TfL RAIL).
Above: 345005 at Stratford on 14/7/18. (John Podgorski).
New Class 345s have reached 345052.
1/7/18: 345011 on 5Q50 WB-IL. 345012 as 5Q80 IL-WB.
9/7/18: 345025 on test in tunnel. At Old Oak Common depot @ 1400 were 345002/13/17/19/20/23/24/28-35/37-42.
21/7/18: 345010 – WB-IL. 345022 – IL-WB.
Above: Class 315s stabled at Aldersbrook Sidings, Ilford on 14/7/18. (John Podgorski).
NATIONAL EXPRESS OPERATIONS.
The legal lettering has been changed to read ‘West Midlands Travel’. The address remains at Bordesley Green, Birmingham.
The DBS MHA open wagon no 394590, which had been in the headshunt outside Romford electrification depot, has now been moved to the far end of the depot complex.
Above: DR97506 at Romford depot on 14/7/18. (John Podgorski).
NEW HORIZON, FRATING.
Scania K114/Irizar YN04 GGV is now with Simpsons of Rosehearty, north Scotland.
Two ex Metroline ADL/Enviro 200s (YX09 AEV, AFA), have been acquired via Ensign.
Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointer BIG 7006 (orig S303 JUA) has been re-registered BIG 9248. It was pictured (above) at Harwich on 21/7/18.
Sold are Volvo B10M/Plaxton Premiere BIG 611 – to Ryland Coaches of Sutton Coldfield. Plaxton Primo DC04 PAN has reverted to MX55 WDT and also been sold; along with a Primo acquired for spares only.
School contract operations ceased after 20/7/18. The Hadstock School service was absorbed into the route done by Don’s, while the White Notley school run has passed to ACME Buses.
From 30/7/18, Essex CC route 2 (Clacton-Mistley) was taken over, on subcontract from First Essex.
Above: A line up at Parkeston depot on 8/7/18, of vehicles in registration number order. Volvo B12B/Plaxton Panthers AB53 PAN, DC53 PAN and ADL/Enviro200s AB62PAN, DC62 PAN. (John Podgorski).
New are Airbus A321-251n OY-PAD/F.
1/7/18: 56103 on 6L01 to Barrington.
5/7/18: 37884 hauling 365535 on 5Q70 Ely-Northampton ECS south through Cambridge @ 1123.
On 12/7/18, there were significant reductions to flights serving Stansted, due to a pilots’ strike. There were further pilots’ strikes, along with industrial action by cabin crew. On 27/7/18, there were major disruptions to flights into Stansted, due to a thunder storm – the first rain in over 2 months.
SEE LONDON BY NIGHT, RAINHAM.
Trident/EL open topper T818 RFG is now with Alexander of Colwyn Bay.
SOUTH EAST COACHES, SOUTH WOODHAM FERRERS.
Volvo B9R/Plaxton Elite RL62 RSL is now silver, ex white.
ST MARGARETS TRAVEL, NORTH WEALD.
Mb 1524L/UNVI SN12 EBXis ex Seaward, Harlesden.
Dennis Trident/Alexander ALX400 18337 (AE55 DJX) and Volvo B10M/Plaxton Premiere trainer 52441 (R541 GSF) now have super rear adverts for ‘Live Life in the Bus Lane’ – driver recruitment.
Volvo B10M/Jonckherre Mistral driver trainer 52647 (T667 XTV) has appeared at Cambridge. This had previously been at Stagecoach Norfolk.
Ex Norfolk Optare Solos 47904/6/7/12 (YJ09 LBA/E/F, YJ10 EYB) had appeared at Cambridge depot by the end of July, but were not in use. Ex Norfolk Dennis Trident/EL 18280 (PX55 AHJ) was also parked up there at that time, along with withdrawn Trident/ALX400 open toppers 17274 (ACZ 7494) and 17079 (TSU 639).
Another ancillary van rented from Enterprise, is Mb Sprinter WO16 UOS.
STAGECOACH EAST LONDON.
Above: New ADL/Enviro 40D MMC 11036 at Canning Town in July 2018. This is one with digital destinations. (Tony Smethers).
54 new ADL/Enviro 40D MMC “Smart Hybrid” buses are being delivered to West Ham (WH). They have Euro 6 Cummins 7 litre diesel engines, and electric booster motors. They are mainly for use on TfL 241, 330 and 474 – but may appear on other routes. More Tridents will be replaced.
New ADL/Enviro 40Ds are 11033-54 (SN18 KTX, KUA-H//J/K, YY18 TGF/J/K/N/O/U/V/X, THF/G). They have been allocated to West Ham.
The last Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Pointers have been withdrawn from revenue service by Selkent. East London still uses the type for driver training.
Above: New Routemaster LT239 in overall advert for Chiquita Bananas. Old Broad Street, City of London, 14/7/18. There is a sister vehicle with this advert (LT471), but “reversed”, with the nearside and offside designs swapped. (John Podgorski).
STEPHENSONS OF ESSEX.
Dennis Dart SLF/Plaxton Mini Pointer 411 (SK02 XGO) has been withdrawn and cannibalised.
Odd sightings: 19/7/18: Scania Omnidekka 636 (YN55 NHV) on 90. 27/7/18; Mb Sprinter LF demonstrator RE66 VPD on 71C.
TALISMAN, GREAT BROMLEY.
The depot has been largely cleared of vehicles.
Setra S416 UL11 ULM has passed to Galloway, while BU13 ZUA is now with Motts of Stoke Mandeville.
TENDRING TRAVEL, THORPE LE SOKEN.
Further acquisitions are Scania K340EB4/Berkhof Axials RY57 ZKJ/K ex 6691 PH, 8466 PH, ex Hodges of Sandhurst.
TONY GLEW, COGGESHALL.
Another minibus to note is Mb Sprinter 16 seater WN14 GUE.
Sold is short Dennis Javelin/Berkhof M684 LRU.
Following trials on TfL236, the Yutong E10 electric bus demonstrator has moved on to CT Plus.
Above: ADL/Enviro 40H MMC DH34502 at the Basildon Bus Rally, Barleylands, on 22/7/18. (Daniel Pretty).
Has Scania Omnicities YM55 SXB/H, via Ensign.
Has ex Coachstop, Rettendon Mb 0815D/Koch Y30 CHT ex BU53 AXZ.
(The depot is near Purdeys Industrial Estate, but not on it).
TURNERS OF ESSEX.
Accident damaged MAN24/Jonckherre Monaco T616 DWL has been sold (by auction) via Malcolm Harrison, Market Drayton (dealer). It is repairable salvage.
Wright Streetlite WF MX12 CFM is another bus here, with a super rear advert for University of Hertfordshire.
Sold is Bova Futura 70 seater M208 UYD.
With thanks to: M Allen, Anglia Gen, S Austin, W Bell, J Clayton, D Disbury, EBN, Essex Buses Yahoo, A Hazell, Hedingham Omnibuses, M Hough, J Lidstone, LOTS, P Mobbs, P Mundford, D Pretty, T Smethers.