Thursday 30 January 2014

New logo for Blackpool Transport

Dennis Trident 312 in Market Street after its recent repaint, displaying the new look Blackpool Transport logo
Blackpool Transport are beginning to outshop repainted buses with a new logo. The long used tower and waves logo is being ditched for a new look, which replaces the waves of the old logo with a silver, red and yellow 'swoop', in a similar style to the silver and red flash on the side of the buses. Newly repainted Dennis Trident 312 made its debut today on the 14 service displaying the new look.

The new look Blackpool Transport logo on the side of Dennis Trident 312

Monday 20 January 2014

Red Rocket on the 22

Mercedes-Benz Citaro MAL53 on trial on the Catch 22 service in Clifton Street in Blackpool on 20th January
On Monday 20th January, one of the Red Rocket bendy buses was used as a trial on the Catch 22 service, to see if it is feasible to use these long buses on the urban route between Cleveleys and Mereside. The vehicle chosen for the trial operation was Mercedes-Benz Citaro MAL53 (BL52ODK), which is the only one of the three bendy buses to carry the Red Rocket branding on the front panel. Route number 22 was displayed on the lower left hand side of the windscreen, and a board with Cleveleys on one side and Mereside on the reverse was displayed on the dash panel.

Citaro MAL53 on the Catch 22 passes Blackpool Transport Optare Solo 292 in Talbot Road on 20th January

Red Rocket Citaro MAL53 on Talbot Road in Blackpool about to head north for Cleveleys on 20th January

Mercedes-Benz Citaro MAL53 arrives in Cleveleys with Mereside already display on the destination board

Red Rocket Citaro MAL53 departing Cleveleys bound for Mereside in Blackpool at 10:45 on 20th January

Friday 17 January 2014

Second ex Harrogate Volvo enters service

Former Transdev Harrogate and District Volvo B6BLE W601CWX making its debut into service on 17th January
Former Transdev Harrogate and District Volvo B6BLE W601CWX has finally entered service on the Fylde. This bus is the sister vehicle to W611CWX, both of which were purchased by Classic Bus North West last October. 611 was put into service almost immediately, but 601 has languished for several months waiting to be submitted for an MOT. The vehicle has now successfully passed its MOT and made its debut into passenger service on the Catch 22 route today. Sister vehicle 611 is scheduled to become the first bus to receive a new paint scheme for vehicles allocated to the Catch 22 service.

Volvo B6BLE W601CWX turning into Anchorsholme Lane on its way to Mereside on the Catch 22 on January 17th

Thursday 16 January 2014

80 Through the Villages

Archway Travel Dart MPD X503WRG seen passing through the Talbot Gateway construction area at 09:45 on 16th Jan
Some photos of the pair of ex Go North East Plaxton bodied Dennis Dart MPDs that Archway Travel have acquired to run on their new service 80 which operates between Blackpool and Preston via Poulton, Great Eccleston, Elswick, Inskip, Catforth and Cottam. The two Darts have vinyls over the front and side destination boxes that read "80 Through the Villages", and carry a destination board displayed on top of the dash panel that reads "Blackpool" on one side and "Preston" on the reverse.

Archway Travel Dennis Dart MPD X502WRG Preston bound on Grange Road in Layton at 12:05 on 16th January
Archway Travel Dennis Dart MPD X502WRG inbound along Talbot Road in Blackpool at 11:45 on 16th January

Weekly Saver Promotion

Flexity 012 at the Tower, showing the weekly Saver adverts that are displayed at one end on both sides of each tram
Blackpool Transport are currently running a promotion for their weekly Saver tickets. The trams and buses are carrying small window stickers promoting Adult, Young Person and Child weekly Saver tickets, the prices being £14, £11 and £7 respectively when bought onboard a tram or bus. There is a discount of fifty pence for the 7 day adult Saver ticket if purchased in advance, either online or at one of the Travel Centres.

Tuesday 14 January 2014

Archway takes over Route 80

Former Go North East Dennis Dart X502WRG heading towards Preston on the new Archway Travel operated route 80
On Monday 13th January Archway Travel took over the short lived Service 80 between Blackpool and Preston after Classic Bus North West suddenly terminated operation of the route on 20th December last year, after less than two weeks of running it. Archway have purchased Dennis Darts X502WRG and X503WRG from Go North East in order to operate the service commercially for an initial three month trial basis.

Archway Travel Dennis Dart X502WRG arriving in Blackpool town centre along Talbot Road on Tuesday 14th January

Monday 13 January 2014

AEC Swift 554 at Rigby Road

Former Lancastrian Transport Trust collection AEC Swift 554 at Rigby Road tram depot in Blackpool on 13th January
A bus which formed part of the Lancastrian Transport Trust collection was spotted in Rigby Road depot on Monday 13th January. Former Blackpool Corporation 1970 AEC Swift No 554 with Marshall bodywork was noted parked at the far side of the tram depot, the reason for it being on BTS premises is not known.

Routemaster on Catch 22

RML887 seen working a Mereside bound Catch 22 service at Bank Hey Street in Blackpool on 13th January
Monday 13th January saw an unseasonal vehicle in use on the Oakwood Travel operated Catch 22 route in Blackpool, when Routemaster RML887 was noted operating a service to Mereside at Bank Hey Street in Blackpool town centre at lunchtime.

Wednesday 8 January 2014

Ex Fylde Delta appears on eBay

Former Fylde Transport Optare Delta H3 FBT is currently being offered for sale on eBay
Another vehicle from the Classic Bus North West stable has appeared for sale on eBay. Former Fylde Transport Optare Delta H3 FBT was purchased for preservation after being withdrawn by Blackpool Transport in 2011, and is being sold off due to the current owner thinning out his collection of preserved buses. F3 FBT was new in 1991, and latterly became No.133 in the fleet of Blackpool Transport after Fylde were absorbed by BTS.

Delta H3 FBT on Market Street in Blackpool while running as No. 133 in the fleet of Blackpool Transport in 2003
Optare Delta H3 FBT is seen being stored in the garage of Classic Bus North West in November 2013

Tuesday 7 January 2014

Sandbag Wall at Manchester Square

The temporary sandbag wall at Manchester Square on 7th January, with Flexities 013 & 001 passing at the tram stop
Some views of the temporary sandbag wall that has been constructed at Manchester Square, at the point where Blackpool's expensive new coastal defences failed to stop the sea encroaching onto the tram tracks and Promenade during the very high tide on 3rd January.

Manchester Square on 3rd Jan, showing how the sandbags dismally failed to prevent the promenade from flooding

Monday 6 January 2014

Classic Bus Volvo for sale on eBay

Classic Bus North West Volvo B10M R899 XVM for sale on eBay due to now being surplus to requirements
As a result of the demise of Classic Bus North West in December and the withdrawal of two of their routes, the 80 to Preston and the X70 to Manchester, a number of vehicles are now surplus to requirements. 1997 Volvo B10M R899 XVM with Alexander 49 seat bodywork has appeared for sale on the auction website eBay.

The details of surplus CBNW Volvo B10M R899 XVM that has been put up for sale on eBay
CBNW Volvo 899 standing in for failed ex Harrogate Volvo 611 on the X70 Red Rocket on 25th November 2013

Friday 3 January 2014

Tidal Surge Floods Tramway

Flexity 010 northbound near Central Pier with stormy seas caused by a tidal surge and strong winds
For the second time in a month the tram service in Blackpool has had to be curtailed due to the tramway being flooded by a tidal surge. The whole West Coast of England was predicted to be at risk from flooding on 3rd January, due to a combination of high tides combined with low pressure and strong winds. The Flexity tram service operated normally throughout the morning, but at midday Flexity 008 was the last tram to run through the Central Promenade area, continuing on south to Starr Gate depot. The tramway was flooded by the noon high tide from Manchester Square to St Chad's Road tram stop, there was also flooding right across the tram tracks at New Bonny Street, just south of the Tower. The Flexity trams operated a reduced service from North Pier to Fleetwood Ferry during the afternoon. See Blackpool Trams on Flickr for more photos taken during the day.

Flexity 008 splashing through sea water at Manchester Square. This section was closed due to flooding after this
The tracks were flooded from Manchester Sq to St Chad's, causing a reduced service on the tramway from North Pier
Flexity 012 with North Pier on the display. A curtailed passenger service was operated between here and Fleetwood
Flexity 013 reversing over the crossover at North Pier before heading back north to Fleetwood Ferry

Flexity 016 laying over, while 012 has pulled up behind to unload. 013 is just visible parked on the northbound track