Saturday, 31 December 2016

Farewell to the Routemaster

Routemasters and other vehicles preparing to enter service at the Catch22Bus depot on 31st December
Saturday 31st December was the final day that non DDA compliant buses were allowed to be used on stage carriage services. To commemorate this historic and sad occasion, Catch22Bus operated a fully step entrance heritage bus service on their Coastliner 21 route, that runs between between Cleveleys and St Annes. The vehicles rostered for use on the day were former London Routemasters RML887 and RM1583 (recently repainted out of its Blackpool livery into London red), ex Blackpool PD3 516 and ex Ribble Bristol VR 1997. During the morning the Lancastrian Transport Trust ran their former Ribble Atlantean 1805 as an extra on the route, providing free trips for passengers. After a crew break PD3 516 was swapped for former Blackpool PD3 529, to add even more variety to the service. As all these buses will now no longer be permitted to run in passenger service, in future they will be limited to private hires and other occasional outings.

RM1583 parked in St Annes waiting to commence service on the Coastliner 21 to Cleveleys
RM1583 in St Annes, with former Ribble Atlantean 1805 running as an extra on service 21X
Former Blackpool Leyland PD3 516 near the Pleasure Beach on its way to St Annes
Ex Blackpool PD3 516 picking up passengers in Blackpool on its run south to St Annes
RML887 passing South Pier on its way north towards Cleveleys
Leyland PD3 529 and Bristol VR 1997 pausing at a stop in Blackpool with BTS Trident 368 heading north
RM1583 near North Pier in Blackpool heading towards Cleveleys
Former Blackpool PD3 529 heading south through Talbot Square in Blackpool
Former Ribble Bristol VR 1997 turning round in Cleveleys to head back south again to St Annes
RM1583 arriving at Cleveleys after its run from St Annes
Ex Blackpool PD3 529 laying over at the southern terminus of service 21 in St Annes
RML887 in Cleveleys at the start of its run south along the Fylde Coast to St Annes

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