Saturday, 31 March 2012

Local Transport in Bedworth

Ken Jones visited Bedworth recently and sent us the following pictures of the local transport scene.
From having a standard corporate livery, Stagecoach have moved into a phase of allowing a whole range of
local liveries and above and below we see examples of this

FirstGroup Creates Trust for Historic Buses

Transport operator FirstGroup has created a new trust to restore and preserve some of the company's historic vehicles.
The FirstGroup Heritage Trust already has four buses from First's operations in Aberdeen, dating as far back as the 1930s.
The collection includes a 1965 Daimler, a 1975 Leyland Leopard and a 1930 Albion.
The company said more vehicles would be added from First depots across the UK.
Trust secretary Joe Mackie said: "It's important we protect and preserve our heritage vehicles.
"In Aberdeen, for example, our 1930s Albion bus has a rich and varied history - to condemn it to the scrapheap or consider selling it would be a great loss."
'Historical significance'
He added: "In setting up the trust, vehicles with historical significance such as the Albion are protected.
"There are a number of buses throughout our operations in the UK that we will take ownership of, and subsequently restore and preserve them."
The original chassis of the 1930 Albion was discovered by a London resident in his back garden a number of years ago.
It later emerged the bus was in service in Aberdeen in the 1930s before being commissioned during World War II and taken to London.
It was transported back to Aberdeen 10 years ago and restored to its former glory.
All four vehicles held by the trust are now on display at the Grampian Transport Museum in Alford, Aberdeenshire.

Information from Phil G

Steam on the London Underground

Further to our previous coverage of a steam engine being tested on the London Underground, we can now give you a link to another short video of the event which has been posted on the Leon Daniels website.

Friday, 30 March 2012

The Chesterfield Colonel Launch

Two of the Colonel liveried ADL Enviro200s stand
at the Elder Way Chesterfield terminus.

Marketing staff don combats!
Click here

Colonel pics on Focusonflickr

Stagecoach Group shortlisted for Great Western and Thameslink rail franchises

First Great Western HST 43134 photographed at Reading.

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Green Duchess of Sutherland on mainline test.

Tony Wilson was on hand in Chesterfield yesterday (28/03/2012), with his camera to record 46233, the Duchess of Sutherland, as she does the "Sheffield loop" on test after her major overhaul.

Looking splendid in the sun, 46233, photographed @ Chesterfield. 
Tony also caught a couple of heritage diesels and a few regulars while enjoying the March sun. 
These can be seen on FocusonFlickr

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

New buses arrive at Stagecoach Mansfield.

Newly arrived 36511 FX12 BOU stands outside Sutton Road Depot, Mansfield
Yesterday, 27th March 2012, we received notification that five ADL Enviro200 darts had been delivered to Mansfield depot. Arrangements were made to access the depot to photograph them today, 28th. We had just finished when four more arrived. One of which was posed outside for photographs. 

Fleet Number
Company & depot
Reg Plate
East Midlands (Mansfield)
East Midlands (Mansfield)
East Midlands (Mansfield)
East Midlands (Mansfield)
East Midlands (Mansfield)
East Midlands (Mansfield)
East Midlands (Mansfield)
East Midlands (Mansfield)
East Midlands (Mansfield)

List of delivered vehicles to date.

more pics  FocusonFlickr

see also FocusTransport

Lynx Running Day at St Helens

We have already shown a selection of pictures of the Leyland Lynx Running Day on our FocusFlickr site, and now Ken Jones has sent us these three additional pictures taken on the day.

Visit our Flickr site to see more pictures of St Helens 

Finally, confirmation of Go-Ahead Group aquisition

Go-Ahead Group acquires Northumberland Park Bus Depot.

The Go-Ahead Group plc  6th Floor, 1 Warwick Row, London  SW1E 5ER
Telephone 020 7821 3939   Facsimile 020 7821 3938

Press Release
19 March 2012

Go-Ahead Group acquires Northumberland Park Bus Depot

The Go-Ahead Group plc is pleased to announce the acquisition of First London East's Northumberland Park bus depot in Tottenham, north east London for a gross cash consideration of £14.0m. The transaction will be completed on 30 March 2012.

The acquisition increases Go-Ahead's share of the London bus market from 22% to 23%.

The business has around 400 employees and a fleet of 130 buses. It operates 13 Transport for London contracts including route 67 from Wood Green to Aldgate, route 476 Euston to Northumberland Park and a number of school contracts. The annual turnover of the business is around £24.5m.

Northumberland Park will complement Go-Ahead's existing Docklands Buses and Blue Triangle operations based in Silvertown and Rainham respectively.

David Brown, Group Chief Executive for Go-Ahead said: "We have great confidence in the London bus market and our management team in London and this acquisition provides the opportunity to operate in a new area of the capital. Northumberland Park is located near both Tottenham Hale and White Hart Lane, where regeneration is either planned or already underway.

"We look forward to working with the Northumberland Park team to build on their success to date and to continue to deliver a good service to passengers in this area of London on behalf of Transport for London."

Northumberland Park will become part of Go-Ahead London, under the leadership of Managing Director John Trayner.

For further information, please contact:

Holly Birch, Group Investor Relations Manager

Go-Ahead is a leading UK public transport operator, providing high quality services in the bus and rail sectors. Employing around 22,000 people across the country, over one billion passenger journeys are undertaken on our services each year.  We are committed to operating our companies in a safe, socially and environmentally responsible way and are proud to have been awarded the Carbon Trust Standard after taking action on climate change.  In addition to the travelling public, our customers include the Department for Transport, Transport for London (TfL) and local authorities.

Go-Ahead is one of the UK’s largest bus operators.  With a fleet of around 3,900 buses, we carry, on average, around 1.7 million passengers every day.  Our operations are focused on high density commuter markets. We have a strong presence in London, with around 22% market share, where we provide regulated services for TfL.  We operate deregulated services in Oxford, East Anglia, the South East, Southern and North East England.  We also have a yellow school bus joint venture in North America.

Our rail division operates the Southern (including Gatwick Express), Southeastern and London Midland franchises through our 65% owned subsidiary Govia. It is the busiest rail operation in the UK, responsible for nearly 30% of all UK passenger rail journeys. In December 2009, Southeastern began operating the UK's first high speed domestic rail service between Kent and London, significantly reducing journey times.

This item is confirmation of the item on FocusBlog we ran on March 1st 2012.

To view original blog click.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

More from Norman Baker

Local Transport Minister Norman Baker announced a package of new measures yesterday, in response to the need to reform bus subsidy (Bus Service Operators Grant) and the recently concluded Competition Commission investigation into the bus market.
  • New regulations to ensure healthy competition between bus companies. This is in response to the Competition Commission report in to the local bus market;
  • Support to local authorities in delivering effective, innovative public transport services for local communities through the Bus Service Operators Grant; and
  • An extra £15 million to help increase investment in smart ticketing equipment, particularly among small and medium-sized bus companies.
The new proposals follow consultation with bus operators, local councils, Local Government Association, the Passenger Transport Executive Group, the Confederation for Passenger Transport and the Community Transport Association.
  • Subsidy payments: a proportion of these will now be devolved to local authorities, rather than paid to bus companies. The government recognises that every area has their own travel issues and transport needs. It will now be up to authorities to decide how this money is spent;
  • Competition barriers: will be eliminated and new regulations developed to prevent anti-competitive practices by bus operators. The Department will work closely with local councils to offer guidance on developing reasonably-priced tickets that can be used on any bus; and
  • Smart ticketing: we are providing an extra £15 million to operators of local bus services that do not have smart ticketing equipment installed on their buses. This will help meet the aim that by 2014, the majority of journeys by public transport be made using a smartcard.
Information from DfT website.

David Gambles

Stagecoach Sheffield announce award of Green bus funding

for route 52 (Crookes --Woodhouse)

ADl Enviro 400H  passes the old GPO building in Sheffield City centre
Stagecoach have been awarded grants toward the purchase of 19 more ADL Enviro 400H vehicles.

Monday, 26 March 2012

2012 Green Bus Details

Further to our coverage of the latest Green Bus Funding Awards we list below a breakdown of which companies have been successful in their bids and show what buses will be funded.

The East Midlands will have 21 new low carbon buses. The two winners are:
Nottingham City Council – 15 single-decked hybrid electric buses and 4 double-decker hybrid electric buses.
P C Coaches of Lincoln Ltd – 2 double-decker hybrid electric buses.

The East of England will have 42 new low carbon buses. The three winners are:
Anglian Bus Ltd - 13 gas single-decked buses.
Ensign Bus Company Ltd – 6 double-decker hybrid electric buses.
First Essex Buses Ltd – 23 single-decked hybrid electric buses.

Transport for London will have 70 new low carbon buses.

The North East will have 42 new low carbon buses. The five winners are:
Arriva Durham Ltd – 11 gas single-decked buses.
Arriva Northumbria Ltd – 10 double-decker hybrid electric buses.
GO North East – 15 double-decker hybrid electric buses.
Nexus – 1 single-decked hybrid electric bus.
Tyne & Wear Bus Company – 5 single-decked hybrid electric buses.

The North West will have 132 new low carbon buses. The ten winners are:
Arriva Merseyside Ltd - 33 double-decker hybrid electric buses.
Arriva Manchester Ltd – 11 double-decker hybrid electric buses.
Warrington Borough Transport Ltd t/a Network Warrington – six single-decked hybrid electric buses.
Blueworks – four single-decked hybrid electric buses.
Arriva North West Ltd – ten gas single-decked buses.
Reays Coaches Ltd – two single-decked hybrid electric buses.
Rotala plc – 15 double-decker hybrid electric buses.
Stagecoach Manchester - 40 double-decker hybrid electric buses.
Transport for Greater Manchester – 11 single-decked hybrid electric buses.

The South East will have 59 new low carbon buses. The five winners are:
Arriva Kent Ltd – 11 double-decker hybrid electric buses.
Brighton & Hove Bus Company – 11 double-decker hybrid electric buses.
First Beeline Buses Ltd t/a First Berkshire – 10 single-decked hybrid electric buses.
Milton Keynes Council – 8 fully electric single-decked buses.
Oxford Bus Company – 19 double-decker hybrid electric buses

The South West will have 13 new low carbon buses. The two winners are:
First Somerset & Avon Ltd - eight double-decker hybrid electric buses.
Holsworthy Ltd - five single-decked hybrid electric buses.

The West Midlands will have 29 new low carbon buses. The two winners are:
Johnsons (Henley) Ltd – 4 double-decker hybrid electric buses and 4 single-decked hybrid electric buses.
West Midlands Travel Ltd – 21 double-decker hybrid electric buses

Yorkshire & Humberside will have 31 new low carbon buses. The two winners are:
Arriva Yorkshire Ltd – 12 double-decker hybrid electric buses;
Stagecoach Yorkshire – 19 double-decker hybrid electric buses.

Source DfT website

David Gambles

Sunday, 25 March 2012

BBA Winners

Further to the announcement about the Better Bus Area (BBA) awards, giving local authority grants of up to £5 million per area, to boost growth, cut carbon emissions, improve partnerships with bus companies and increase bus numbers, full details are listed below

East Midlands Better Bus Area (BBA) winners

Derby has been awarded £2,176,000 to implement a package of measures to (1) improve the reliability and punctuality of bus services (priority measures); (2) enhance the quality of passenger facilities, information provision and vehicles; (3) support joint operator ticketing to make it easier and cheaper to travel (initially through disposable smartcard day tickets); (4) encourage behaviour change through marketing and promotional activities. For further information, go to

Leicestershire will receive £2,562,100 to address significant congestion on the A426 into Leicester. Includes, bus lanes, bus gates, bus lane enforcement, bus lane review, junction improvements, targeted marketing personalised travel plans, bus information strategy, smart ticketing, work grants and bus stop improvements. For further information, go to

Nottingham can expect £4,908,000 to spend on ten corridors in Nottingham aiming to bring them up to 'tram' standard. This will be done by extending the existing Statutory Bus Quality Partnership. The bid looks to make bus travel more reliable and
attractive as well as improve the perception of safety through a package of measures such as bus priority, installation of shelters, bus stop lighting, CCTV, real time displays and promotion. For further information, go to

East of England Better Bus Area (BBA) winners

BBA local authority grants of up to £5 million will boost growth, cut carbon emissions, improve partnerships with bus companies and increase bus numbers.

Bedford has been awarded £218,170 for smart ticketing provision for small operators, enabling multi-operator ticketing, traffic priority measures and real time information displays within the urban area of Bedford. For further information , go to

Cambridgeshire will receive £1,724.000 to improve accessibility, bus journey times on key bus routes in Cambridgeshire. The changes will include new traffic management on four corridors into the city, bus priority, upgraded buses, improved interchanges (including with Guided Busway), smart ticketing top-up on street and real time passenger information. For further information, go to

Norfolk can expect £2,583,300 for the implementation of bus priority measures. These include the Bus Rapid Transit corridor delivery, development of transport hubs, enhancement to bus operations, new ticketing schemes and smarter choices initiatives. For further information, go to

Southend will receive £1,577,000 for the introduction of a borough-wide Smartcard, better interchanges/bus stops, improving local congestion/air quality and increased sustainability and management. For further information, go to

North East Better Bus Area (BBA) winners

BBA local authority grants of up to £5 million will boost growth, cut carbon emissions, improve partnerships with bus companies and increase bus numbers.

Tyne and Wear have been awarded £4,972,000 to pay for 19 display boards (Intelligent Transport Systems) across key bus corridors throughout six congestion hotspots and at three bus interchanges. There will also be conversion of a road to allow two-way bus traffic, interchange and bus stop improvements including CCTV, new shelters and raised kerbs.

For further information on the project go to

North West Better Bus Area (BBA) winners

BBA local authority grants of up to £5 million will boost growth, cut carbon emissions, improve partnerships with bus companies and increase bus numbers.

Blackpool has been awarded £1,073,000 to regenerate Blackpool Town Centre. The improvements include: a contra-flow bus lane, upgraded bus shelters to improve accessibility and real time information and improvements to bus stops. For further information, go to

Greater Manchester will receive £4,207,000 to improve bus journey times, reliability and punctuality. This will mean better transport interchanges and improved routes to support job opportunities at Trafford Park and Salford Quays. For further information, go to

Merseyside can expect £4,999,000 to transform and develop local bus infrastructure, real time and mobile information provision so passengers can check bus times. For further information, go to

South East Better Bus Area (BBA) winners

BBA local authority grants of up to £5 million will boost growth, cut carbon emissions, improve partnerships with bus companies and increase bus numbers.

Brighton and Hove has been awarded £3,480,000 to upgrade services and bus stop infrastructure on the Lewes Road corridor to Susses University (£2.8m, of which £1.24m local contribution), new bus priorities on Eastern Road corridor from the Royal Sussex County Hospital (£1.4m, of which £0.6m local contribution), and in the city centre, Valley Gardens (£1.6m, of which £0.5m is local contribution). For further information, go to

Hampshire will receive £4,477,200 to implement a package of eleven separate measures. These include bus refurbishment, a Wi-Fi enabled fleet, next stop displays and bus priority infrastructure - designed to tackle known barriers to bus travel and raise the customer experience. For further information, go to

Milton Keynes can expect £2,230,000 to focus on the four main employment bus corridors. This will improve connections between where people live and where people work. The bid consists of 6 elements: update and develop RTPI; smart ticketing;
service improvements; smarter choices; interchange; and way-finding/access for all. Each element designed to address different barriers to increased bus use, particularly for work-based travel, e.g. level of service, ease of use, availability of information and increased awareness of services. For further information, go to

Bracknell has been awarded £300,000 to expand Real Time Passenger Information (RTI) across borough-wide. The project intends to build on investment begun by the operators to realise the benefits within a shorter timescale, and link bus RTI with other real time transport information at a single web location enabling informed travel choices. For further information, go to

Slough will receive £1,415,000 to address punctuality and reliability issues on Route 78 running between the main Slough urban area and Heathrow Airport. The proposed package of interventions comprises: signals upgrades at 14 junctions to give bus priority; introduction of bus lanes on the approach to three junctions, abolition of seven bus stop lay-bys and selective highway widening. For further information, go to

South West Better Bus Area (BBA) winners

BBA local authority grants of up to £5 million will boost growth, cut carbon emissions, improve partnerships with bus companies and increase bus numbers.

Bournemouth has been awarded £2,434,000 to improve the bus network in South East Dorset. This will be used to improve infrastructure to promote a safer and higher quality transport experience for passengers by upgrading bus shelters, installing solar powered information display boards and LED lighting on buses. For further information go to

Bristol will receive £4,986,000 to improve bus routes on the A38 Filton Road by replacing bus shelters and installing real-time passenger information. The A420 at Kingswood will see traffic signals updated, bus stops replaced and new real-time information boards. Bus passengers who use the A4 from
Bristol to Bath will see real-time display boards, Wi-Fi in 230 buses and traffic enforcement measures. For further information, go to

Torbay can expect £514,700 for real-time information (RTI) display boards for bus passengers around the Torbay area as well as creating three traffic control centres and upgrading four busy road junctions to include bus priority. The RTI proposal involves upgrading all bus stops to allow for GPS tracking, along with RTI screens at three main bus stations. For further information, go to

Wiltshire will receive £394,320 to implement a package of measures to tackle specific challenges in the county. A new park and ride service will be developed to help provide sustainable access to an employment site and tackle congestion. Other measures include improving the bus offer in Salisbury and replacing fluorescent lighting in buses with low carbon emission LED lighting. For further information go to

Better Bus Area (BBA) winners in the West Midlands

BBA local authority grants of up to £5 million will boost growth, cut carbon emissions, improve partnerships with bus companies and increase bus numbers.

West Midlands has been awarded £5,000,000 for bus station and improvement services to Merry Hill Shopping Centre and Waterfront Business Park. Highway measures to segregate buses, new bus stops, bus information, smart ticketing, smartcard roll-out and new accessible Euro 5 buses.

For further information, go to

Yorkshire and Humberside Better Bus Area (BBA) winners

BBA local authority grants of up to £5 million will boost growth, cut carbon emissions, improve partnerships with bus companies and increase bus numbers.

West Yorkshire has been awarded £4,975,000 to boost, expand and accelerate ‘smart ticketing in the region. It includes smartcard ticketing in York as an optional component. This will maximise the potential of bus services and increase patronage. For further information, go to

South Yorkshire will receive £4,908,000 to provide quicker, faster and smoother bus services in South Yorkshire. The project pulls together a number of measures designed both to ameliorate existing congestion and to facilitate planned future growth in the four major South Yorkshire metropolitan areas (Sheffield, Rotherham, Doncaster and Barnsley). The proposal includes three main elements: Smart Ticketing, various infrastructure projects and better traffic management through the use automated management tools. For further information, go to

York can expect £2,925,000 to improve reliability, punctuality in the city centre and initiate travel behaviour change. These include a programme of bus priority scheme, smart ticketing, bus stop/shelter refurbishment, improved bus service information, the
creation of five bus interchanges, traffic enforcement, and a comprehensive marketing and promotion campaign. For further information, go to

Source DFT Website

David Gambles

 Details of the buses involved in the Green Bus Funding Awards will follow tomorrow

Saturday, 24 March 2012

2012 Green Bus Funding

The results for the latest round of Green Bus Funding have been announced by Transport Minister Norman Baker.

Five manufacturers will benefit from orders for their eco-friendly hybrid, electric and gas buses. They comprise: Volvo, Wrightbus, Optare, MAN and Alexander Dennis Limited. 

As well as announcing the successful GBF bids, the DfT website gives the following details which contains information about the Better Bus Area (BBA) fund to boost growth, improve partnerships with bus companies and increase bus passenger numbers.

From the DFT website
"Commuters and bus passengers across England will see more eco-friendly buses on the roads, congestion reduced and services upgraded, thanks to a new £101 million package of improvements approved by Local Transport Minister Norman Baker, who announced
  • £31 million spent on 439 low-carbon buses, part of the Government’s Green Bus Fund which aims to bring down fuel emission and air pollution levels and encourage bus operators and local councils to make the switch to hybrid-electric, fully electric or gas buses.
  • Winning local authorities across England will also receive a share of £70 million under the Better Bus Area (BBA) fund to boost growth, improve partnerships with bus companies and increase bus passenger numbers.
Local Transport Minister Norman Baker said:
“This funding means a better deal for passengers and encourages more people to travel by bus. It updates and improves services and infrastructure, reduces congestion, gives quieter journeys and with the introduction of new carbon friendly buses, reduces fuel costs and CO2 emissions, creating a greener network.”
The £70 million will be shared between 24 local authorities who have impressed the Department with their bid for funding. They will benefit from up to £5 million each. This will support a range of targeted improvements including:
  • smarter multi-operator tickets
  • traffic lights that can help buses beat the queue
  • real time information; and
  • improvements to shelters and stops
Following a two month bidding process the department has provided funding for 439 new eco-friendly buses for 2012/2013. Passengers will see 128 single-decked and 311 double-decker buses in service from spring 2013, saving over 9,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions per year. The 26 bus operators including Stagecoach, Arriva and First are receiving more than £22 million, with more than £8 million split between five local authorities.
By switching to low-carbon buses, the winners will also be eligible to claim additional government subsidy through the Bus Service Operators Grant to run these buses. Bus operators and local authorities will be given six pence per kilometre to support them with operational costs."

Details of the 'Better Bus Area' awards will follow tomorrow on this Focus Transport Blog.

David Gambles

Friday, 23 March 2012

Latest Green Bus Funding awards

A fleet of 40 hybrid electric vehicles will be introduced in Manchester on the Stagecoach 192 route, as a result of the latest round of Green Bus Funding.
The 192 route, which carries nearly 10 million passengers a year, connects Manchester city centre with Stockport and Hazel Grove. High-frequency services run up to every 2 minutes at peak times and the Stagecoach route will be served entirely by hybrid electric buses.
The investment follows confirmation from the Department for Transport today of several successful bids for part-funding of new low carbon vehicles from its Green Bus Fund.
A fleet of 19 hybrid electric vehicles will also be introduced by Stagecoach on its Sheffield 52 route. It carries around 3 million passengers a year, connecting the densely populated suburbs of Hillsborough, Crookes, Attercliffe, Darnall and Woodhouse.

The 192 route in Manchester is part of Greater Manchester’s first Statutory Quality Bus Partnership Scheme (SQP). It involves a joint commitment by Stagecoach, Transport for Greater Manchester, Manchester City Council and Stockport Council to take steps to help reduce congestion, improve punctuality and deliver better air quality. The new vehicles will replace existing low emissions vehicles, bringing the number of Stagecoach hybrid electric buses in Manchester to 90.
The Stagecoach 52 service in Sheffield links the main shopping centre, Sheffield University and the Children’s Hospital. The route is part of a partnership agreement with South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive, Sheffield City Council and First South Yorkshire, which offers integrated ticketing and high frequency services.

Further details of other successful Green Bus Awards will follow on the Focus Blog tomorrow.

Focus Comment
You will note that further bids from Stagecoach for their Newcastle operation are absent, almost certainly as a result of the misguided efforts of Nexus and the Tyne & Wear PTE to take control of the operations in this area.
The above awards are as a result of bids which demonstrate successful partnerships between PTE's and Councils who work in a professional manner with their local bus companies.

David Gambles

Flywheel Power for Buses

The Go-Ahead Group and Williams Hybrid Power (WHP), a subsidiary of Williams Grand Prix Engineering, have signed a ground breaking agreement to develop a flywheel energy storage application for use in buses.
Go-Ahead and Williams Hybrid Power have agreed to work together to develop and produce six prototype buses with a retrofitted hybrid flywheel system, providing electro mechanical energy to drive the bus and deliver substantial improvements to fuel economy and reductions in CO2 emissions. Go-Ahead is one of the UK’s leading providers of passenger transport, with over one billion passenger journey’s taken each year on its bus and rail services.
Williams Hybrid Power has been at the forefront of hybrid flywheel systems within motor racing, originally developing it for the Williams Formula One car and providing systems to Porsche for the 911 GT3 Hybrid and recently Audi for the R18 e-tron Quattro that will compete at this year’s Le Mans 24 hour race.
The company is now making the technology available to applications such as hybrid passenger vehicles, electric trains, rapid transit systems and smart grid infrastructure to meet their high power energy storage needs, save fuel and reduce emissions.
Phil Margrave, Go-Ahead’s Group Engineering Director, commented, ‘In the on-going quest to significantly reduce the CO2 emissions of the Go-Ahead Group we are very excited to be working with Williams Hybrid Power, a British technology company at the cutting edge of alternative energy solutions. We are convinced that the experience and expertise they have gained from developing and using the flywheel technology in motorsport will migrate to the bus market and deliver a ground breaking solution to the issue of fuel efficiency.’’
Speaking about the announcement Ian Foley, Managing Director of Williams Hybrid Power, added, ‘’I am delighted that we have signed this agreement with a forward thinking company like Go-Ahead. From the very beginning we identified public transport as an ideal customer for our flywheel technology and I am excited about the challenge of delivering this innovative solution for the bus industry. Hopefully this is the beginning of many such initiatives in the public transport field.’’

Thursday, 22 March 2012

News from Nottingham & Derby

This weekend trent barton start a new skylink service from Nottingham through Long Eaton to EMA and Loughborough.  It will run every 30 minutes and was conceived as a replacement for NCT''s skylink.  The new tb service is more indirect and slower but it will compete head on with Premier's Red 5 between Nottingham and Long Eaton.

In the meantime Premier are launching Red Flyer which will run hourly to East Midlands Airport, following the old NCT route to the south of the city through Clifton.

On 1st April the new High Peak bus company will take over 186/187 (Buxton local service), 199 Skylink Buxton - MCR airport and Transpeak Nottingham - Manchester.  There will be small changes to most time tables, I understand that High Peak's livery will be orange & blue and that both former Bowers and tb buses will be based at tb's Dove Holes garage.

Finally Arriva owned Wardles are starting a new service X50 Derby - Uttoxeter - Stoke on Trent service see:-
Richard Lomas

Focus Comment
With the above posting we welcome Richard back to this website. He has spent the last four months seriously ill in hospital and the fact that he has felt well enough to be able to send this information from his hospital bed gives us hope that he will soon be well enough to be discharged from hospital and return home. We wish him well.
David Gambles

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Go North East Campaign Shifts up a Gear

Bus operator Go North East has stepped up its opposition to plans for councillors to seize control of Tyne and Wear’s bus services.

A specially-liveried double deck bus has taken to the streets of the county to promote the company’s ‘Say Yes Now’ campaign.

Nexus and the Tyne and Wear Integrated Transport Authority want to control where and when the buses run through contracts, but Go North East thinks this would be a bad idea for the county.

Martin Harris, Go North East’s commercial director, said: “Contracts like the scheme that Nexus is proposing might work in London, but at huge cost. London’s buses are heavily subsidised by council tax payers and London’s motorists through the Congestion Charge. Councillors up here have ruled out congestion charging for our towns and cities, so council tax payers will have to be prepared to dig deep in their pockets if this scheme goes ahead.”

Go North East is offering a counter proposal that instead uses Quality Partnerships to manage local bus services.

Mr. Harris said: “Quality Partnerships put the needs of bus users and local communities first, without burdening local councils with the financial risk of a bus network that costs about £140 million to run.

“We recognise that things have to change – nothing stays the same. That’s why we’ve published a ‘Charter for Positive Change’ that outlines just some of the benefits that can flow from a partnership approach.”

The contracts being advocated by Nexus could see popular cheap local tickets being scrapped in favour of expensive county-wide schemes and buses being taken off where they run near the heavily subsidised Metro system.

Mr. Harris said: “Nine out of ten buses in Tyne and Wear run without any subsidy at all. 92% of our customers have said for two years running that they’re satisfied or very satisfied with their buses – that’s the highest satisfaction rate in the country.

“Placing control of the buses into the public sector, at a time when public finances are already under severe pressure, simply doesn’t make sense.”

The ‘Say Yes Now’ campaign bus will be seen on busy routes across the North East.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Stolen  Preserved Optare Delta G254 JYG   Stolen 

At some time between 1200 on Thursday 15th March 2012 and 

1200 on Saturday 17th March 2012, preserved 
Optare Delta G254 JYG 
was stolen from the farm building it was stored in (in the York area).
  This vehicle is owned by Transport Yorkshire Preservation Group Ltd, and was formerly FirstGroup 60018 and is the only surviving Optare Delta that was delivered to Yorkshire Rider.

If anyone has seen this vehicle since Thursday, please could they share this information with 
us. If desired, anonymous reports can be made at clicking 'contact us'.  
We have reason to believe it now may be elsewhere in the country (potentially at a scrapyard,
either licenced or unlicenced). Alternatively, please dial 101 (15p flat rate to call from any phone including mobiles), ask for North Yorkshire Police, quote 'inc number 121200 44085' and give whatever information you can.

A photo of the bus taken on Thursday is at

- this is the last time we saw her.

Any information even if vague would be appreciated.  Thank you in anticipation 

James Fairchild
Transport Yorkshire Preservation Group Ltd 

Forwarded:-- Martin Arrand