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Tuesday 20th October 2009 ~ The Pendulum Swings

Only a few days ago I was talking of the prospect of there being just a single B10M Premiere coach out on the X1, such was the growing reliability of the Gemini fleet. Well today there was indeed one B10M Premiere out - along with five others !!!
How can a big company like 'First' get away with using N & P reg step entrance coaches on its flagship route in 2009 ? Well the reason is of course because passengers see very little reason to complain when a comfy coach arrives to take them to their destination on time, however old it might be and although it is probably grossly politically incorrect to say so, very few people are bothered about the lack of low floor access. It is a fact, which may seem rather unpalatable to those who make such decisions, that the percentage of disabled people who are unable to mount a couple of steps is actually a very small minority. People who suffer from such a chronic condition are also highly unlikely to take a bus. I await your comments, but speak with some knowledge having had a Father who was totally disabled for ten years. I would never have considered taking him by bus, even if low floor vehicles had been guaranteed and yes of course I do realise that not everyone has access to a car. Anyway that's enough from me on what is rather a sensitive issue - what of today's X1 ?
Even though six B10M coaches were employed, there was still a long period when a low floor trip was guaranteed. Commencing with the 12.48 from Wisbech to Peterborough (K14), subsequent services were completely B9 operated up to and including the 17.18 (K4). The main reason for using so many coaches seems to be because 37158/160 were out on Hunstanton services and schools contracts, probably because Volvo B7TLs 30886 & 30889 were under repair at King's Lynn. 37159 is also absent at Volvo.
I'm no clearer discovering what exactly happened yesterday but one addition comes from Michael Bryant who noted 20104 on the 12.08 Lowestoft - Norwich X2. Today the X1 saw 20109 on K5, 20118 on Y6 and in line for returning to Lowestoft again this evening, 20103 on Y7, 20127 on Y9, 20104 on L10 and 20107 on Y13. 20109 was taken off its duty at Lowestoft and then worked the 14.08 Lowestoft - Norwich X2, with 37565 taking K5 back west. Most surprising though was the return of 20127 last seen on September 3rd giving wait to the theory that 20126 may have expired at some stage yesterday. Apart from delays caused by the ongoing Peterborough roadworks in the morning peak, punctuality was good today.
Confirmation comes today that South Brink in Wisbech will be closed for 8 weeks from 29th October which will necessitate diversion of the X1 via the Wisbech bypass and the A1101 once more.

1 comment:

Ian Wiseman said...

I don't understand why relatively posh buses like the B7's would be used on School services where the spotty herberts from Smithdon will probably create havoc on them. Just a comment about low floor use, in Hunstanton especially there are a lot of elderly and disabled people who wouldn't be able to get out and about without the use of low floor vehicles. My mother (when she was alive) was stuck in Hunstanton for 2 hours one day when low floors were taken off and substituted with B10M's because of school the end my sister had to come from Heacham in her car to pick her up. I do accept that not everyone is in the same situation though.