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Monday 11th November 2013 ~ Bus Service Runs Normally Shock !

Well it is nice to report that things are still running very smoothly on the 'new improved' X1. I had chance to speak with Richard Tucker, King's Lynn depot manager, today. He says that the Enviros are all being returned to Scarborough, mainly for water ingress checks, but that this is being completed on a 24 hour turn around basis, so not really affecting the service requirement. As a precaution, 33423 is being kept at King's Lynn, on loan from Yarmouth until the warranty work is completed. 
Since the last report, little of note has occurred. though a report of Des Speed's day on Wednesday makes interesting reading and shows how accumulating delays can affect the service. His shift began with 33803 working the 06.41 from James Paget Hospital which he drove as far as King's Lynn South Gates. The journey ran on time until a crawl out of Norwich made the service 5 late at Easton. Three way traffic lights at Wellington Road / Kings Road in Dereham were set up but with nobody working, just the lights and men having a teabreak in their van. This meant an arrival at Dereham 12 minutes late. The queue to leave the town saw 33803 running 21 late at Necton then 18 down at Swaffham. Des left the bus at South Gates inward at 09.47, 17 late. His trip back eastbound was with 33811 on the 10.38 South Gates - Lowestoft. This was on time until Norwich bus station where congestion meant loading on Bay 1, departure being 3 late. Temporary lights on Bridge Road / Southtown Road at Yarmouth made the bus 7 late at Gorleston (Library) and Lowestoft arrival was 3 late.
On Thursday K5-XL11 07.45 King's Lynn - Peterborough was seen running in the path of K6-XL12, departing Wisbech at 08.49 with 33813, however, the rest of the day ran well. 33807 came back to King's Lynn in the evening with 33806 going back north.

Friday saw 34109 still in use on an X1 short, captured here by Jamie Skinner.
 Friday was another good day with few delays, although congestion on the western approach to Wisbech saw K17-XL04 with 33817 pass me running 16 late on the 15.15 from Peterborough. Des relieved 33824 working K18-XL05 15.45 from Peterborough at the South Gates inward - it was due at 17.09 and appeared at 17.39. Friday traffic meant it never regained much time and was 22 late into Yarmouth. 33806 returned from repairs today and 33810 went to Scarborough. 
Again on Saturday the service appears to have done well, although K14-XL01 is reported by Doreen  not to have appeared at Peterborough to form the 13.45 eastbound departure and I passed its bus, 33817 near Tilney just after 15.00 running slightly late but showing 'Not In Service' on the front. Des had brought 33817 westbound and the first delays it encountered were at Yarmouth where an overload of passengers saw it leave 4 late. Eventual arrival at the South Gates (inward) was at 12.27, by this time 14 late.  His return eastward was not without incident as 33819 was suffering from a recurrence of its DDA interlock problem meaning that the doors were taking longer to close than normal and this meant a 22 minute late arrival into Yarmouth. 33819 was repaired at Yarmouth garage on Sunday. 33809 became the next bus to go north for repairs and this returned on Sunday with 33821 going the other way.
33813 on K17-XL04 06.50 from Lynn seen arriving in Lowestoft on Saturday. Surprisingly, not all the Enviros are plastered with adverts yet and 33813/20/23 have so far escaped altogether. Photo copyright : Grahame Bessey.
K18-XL05 11.00 Lowestoft - Peterborough seen here departing with 33819. The 'Philomena' advert is currently carried by 33809/11/16/19. Photo Copyright : Grahame Bessey
The former X1 Geminis are a daily sight in Lowestoft and this Yarmouth based example, 37572 is seen working a service 1A to Martham on Saturday. Photo copyright : Grahame Bessey,

Many thanks indeed to Grahame for allowing me to use his excellent pictures. Here is a final shot of 37563 in the new X2 livery taken on Saturday.

 Sunday seemed to be without incident, but Monday (today) saw the B198 closed at the Freedom Bridge exit in Wisbech for resurfacing work. I joined the 13.11 departure from Walpole Highway with Karen F which was 33809 and we travelled as booked to the Walsoken stop, but then went left down Lerowe Road to join Norwich Road and then come into the Horsefair from the A1101 Churchill Road. We were 2 minutes late from Walpole and a minute early at Walsoken (strange timetable !) and following the diversion arrived at Wisbech 4 late. Coming back on Y13-XL19, a last minute passenger meant we were almost a minute late departing and after congestion on Churchill Road, 7 minutes behind at Walsoken. Our driver Bob then really showed what 33822 could do with an impressive run through to Walton Highway which was passed in less than 3 minutes from Walsoken at 14.06/30 and now just 3 minutes behind schedule. I left at Walpole and again could quite easily have stayed on the bus such was the comfort and also, on what was a dank and miserable cold day, an excellent ambient temperature on the bus, so much better than the often cold Geminis. The diversion at Wisbech didn't unsettle the timetable greatly, although K16-XL03 (33810) ran slightly late being seen undergoing its driver change at the South Gates at 16.31, about 13 late. Des reports an eventful journey westbound this morning with 33805 on Y11-XL17 07.15 from Lowestoft. At Toftwood, they caught up the preceding service (L10) which disgorged its passengers onto 33805 and the late bus, 33807 then ran light to Lynn to make up time. 

1 comment:

MARLOW said...

The X1 in Peterborough Bus Station at 1140 had about 10 police cars surrounding it and roughly 20-30 police on and around the vehicle, not sure why but 1 middle aged man with a bag was taken off by 3 police, not making a fuss, at which point the police dispersed and the bus left.