Thursday, 14 May 2020

Focus Transport 9th Birthday

Well, here we are on our 9th Birthday, never ever expecting to be experiencing the effects of a worldwide pandemic.





Transport is so different to what it was just seven weeks ago. On one hand it is surviving and helping essential workers reach their jobs, but on the other hand transport companies both large and small are trying to cope with massively reduced passenger numbers.

Some companies (both large and small) are effectively closed and will never re-open again.
Who would have thought that most of the world's commercial aircraft would have been laid up, buses, trams and trains running to reduced schedules and being subsidised to do so by the government.

The latest is that the government are saying some of you can go back to work, but avoid public transport. Social distancing rules will affect public transport for some considerable time.






It has become increasingly difficult to publish positive news on the Focus website, but we're doing our best to do, so as well as keeping you up to date with the realities of what the transport sector is facing up to.









The good news is that the crisis has brought out the best in people. Essential workers have stayed with it -  NHS staff gaining much praise in the process. But we are all aware of the many transport workers that have made it possible for the NHS and other essential workers to reach their jobs, so a massive thanks to those concerned.

Focus Transport will endeavour to publish each day, our current page view numbers currently exceeding 1,000 per day, and totalling almost 2,700,000.since we launched in 2011.






So, many thanks to our contributors and readers, if you have any feedback or offers of contributions they would be gratefully received. 
We all look forward to better days, when we can meet up with family and friends and plan trips away.



Looking back to our 2011 postings I thought I would share the one about the 2005 Tyne & Wear Designlines which sadly only managed to run for five years and which were scrapped after their comparatively short life on the streets of Newcastle and Gateshead.
The ten vehicles cost £8m. The batteries were charged overnight at the Stagecoach Walkergate depot and charged whilst running, by a high speed turbine as well as making use of regenerative braking.



 A Designline vehicle running on a Quayside shuttle during the
Tall Ships event in July 2005


They were operated by Stagecoach and owned by the local councils who tried to hide their embarrassment over the unreliability of the hybrid vehicles. 
In the end they claimed that the buses had been sold for further use, but we found where they ended their days.







To see the postings click here and the sad pictures here



 JRA 635 at Belsay Hall Northumberland, many miles away from its original home in Chesterfield Derbyshire.
Note the home made destination blind


Way back in our early days we focussed more on older vehicles. Here's a posting 
showing my 1947 Leyland PS1 JRA 635 and other classic vehicles. click here


Another posting from 2011 is this the one about Bus Art where clever use of graphics creates interesting illusions. Bus Art  click here


Thanks again for supporting this website by regular viewing and contributions, we look forward to an eventual return to normal.
DG     

2 comments:

  1. Happy 9th birthday! The failure of the battery bus fleet in Newcastle is interesting; were they just before their time, or perhaps poorly designed for the gradients on the route? And what does that say if anything about the life-expectancy of the present generation of electric buses?
    Another failure is the PickMeUp pilot scheme in Oxford, reportedly closing next month at the end of its initial contract. Are any areas making a go of this idea?

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  2. Happy 9th birthday, the next 9 may well be unscripted at this point! Working for a large national company, its already been acknowledged how successful working from home has been where previously it would have been unheard of, plans are already in place to keep this arrangement going rather than subside employee travel costs or rent further office space. This poses the question will the commuter flow really ever fully recover via bus, train or air? Either way looking forward to reading about it here

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