Search This Blog


Thursday January 5th 2012 ~ X1 Fans

When I was in Edinburgh last weekend I managed to spend a morning with Stuart Montgomery. He took me on one of the new Enviros and we then spent a couple of hours in George Street watching the goings on. Princes Street is of course closed for the installation of the Tramway, so all buses are having to be diverted from this stretch.
 Anyway, Stuart is always (justifiably) proud of Lothian Buses and the immaculate condition in which they keep their fleet. I remember a year or so back I saw one of First's B7 Geminis up there with the fan making a horrendous racket and I asked Stuart if Lothian ever have this problem, as they run a very large Gemini fleet, to which he responded " Och No ! Never, it would be taken straight off the road ". I had to smile then, when last weekend Lothian Gemini 702 I think it was, rounded the corner sounding like a roadsweeper. Stuart swiftly changed the subject !
One of Lothian's Lady Victoria liveried Geminis, one of which had a faulty fan during my visit.
For several months now, our X1 fleet have been silent in this respect, then last night I passed 37160 on K4. I had my stereo turned up quite loud, but the bus seemed to momentarily drown it out. Surely not ? Then today 37160 worked Y7, it being heard before it was viewed, confirming that its fan is playing up. Oh well never mind !
At this point I thought I would go 'off subject' a little and show some other buses seen during my Edinburgh visit. I know some drivers read this blog and they might be surprised to learn that although Lothian's fleet is very new (and completely low floor), indeed Stuart told me that their oldest vehicle is a Y reg Dart, in contrast, the First fleet are quite elderly and certainly older than anything we have apart from 20115/126.

So some pretty ancient stuff there then, but isn't it lovely to still see the Royales in use. Finally on this topic, it's not all low floor with Stagecoach either :

For a better idea of the Lothian fleet, you couldn't do better than to take a look at Stuart's Flickr site :

So what about the X1 then ? Well it was a good day for punctuality overall, certainly at the west end of the route. This afternoon 37573 on K1 passed Bruce 13 late on the 15.15 King's Lynn to Peterborough, but smart working reduced this to just 7 minutes by the time it left Wisbech. Everything else seen was within 8 minutes of the timetable.
Having said that, there was an element of disruption caused in the east due to today's high winds as Des reports :
"I was waiting to work Y7 15.42 Yarmouth - King's Lynn, due in at 15.37. Breydon Bridge had been closed to northbound traffic only, while curiously traffic continued to use it southbound. This resulted in long queues of traffic on all other routes into the town. By 16.00, a Lynn driver who has his meal break at Yarmouth had turned up to work L8 16.12 to Peterborough. we decided that as he had to have a further break  at Lynn before operating the 19.50 thence to Peterborough (L10), he should take the next bus that arrived and operate it as L8 (the 16.12). Y7 arrived at 16.18, 41 late with 37160, this loaded and then departed at 16.21 now running as L8. This would need refuelling at Lynn at 18.55 as it had originally been on Y7 which terminates there, but would now be required to work through to Peterborough and back to Yarmouth.
At 16.28 the original L8 arrived with 37579, 16 late and less delayed as Breydon Bridge had been reopened to northbound traffic. I ran forward as Y7 dropping passengers at Acle, Norwich and Easton with 'not in service' on the screen. I then ran light to Little Fransham where I resumed 'in service' now just 23 minutes late".
37564 in King's Lynn Vancouver Avenue garage this evening after arrival on L11. Along with 37563, 37567, 37573 & 37574, it is currently running without adverts on the passenger side reminding us of how these vehicles were intended to look.
A nice line up of 37575, 37579, 37576 & 37577 at King's Lynn tonight
Elsewhere L12 had 37577 with a gear fault replaced by sister 37578 for the 11.15 Lynn to Peterborough and there was a swap an hour later on K14 too with 37576 coming off for a scheduled service and 37565 working forward as the 12.15 to Peterborough

1 comment:

Apron Strings said...

Thank-you Gerard for the link to my Lothian Buses site and I am laughing at your report of goings on in Edinburgh. It is certainly true that Lothian has probably the youngest fleet in terms of age in the UK -the average age of our 650 fleet is around 5 to 6 years old with just a handful of Y-reg Darts being the oldest around.

Lothian Buses has just won the coveted Top UK City Bus Operator 2011 and this is an accolade we are naturally very proud of.

Your reporting is an inspiration Gerard and keep up the good work. Being a bus enthusiast today is far more than just taking pictures of buses I'd say!