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Sunday 23rd February 2014 ~ Late Blog

33822 in some February sunshine seen departing Norwich Bus Station at 12.50 on Saturday 22nd working K6-XL12 09.35 Peterborough - Lowestoft . Photo copyright : Grahame Bessey
That shows you should never announce when the next update is going to be. Never mind, here we are and once again things are largely running smoothly.
I had a run out on the X1 on Valentines Day, taking K5-XL11 07.37 King's Lynn - Peterborough. I joined 33813 at Wisbech and we left nearly 4 minutes late. The morning peak traffic seemed particularly heavy and slow. By the time we left Thorney our arrears had increased to 9 minutes. Thanks to a large slice of recovery time however, our arrival at Peterborough bus station via the Passport Office route was just one minute late at 09.01. There being no passengers to join (very unusually) this allowed for a quick chat with our driver, Kevin B. We were on time at the rail station at 09.09. There was one unusual vehicle swap in the evening when 33822 had to be removed from L8-XL14 and 33817 which had arrived in King's Lynn at 20.49 on L12-XL18 for garaging was cleaned and refuelled to work the 21.38 to Lowestoft. A collapsed manhole at Necton caused some delays today and then an accident in the evening saw diversions due to an accident on the A47 between Swaffham and Lynn.
33821 arrives in Norwich working K4 08.35 Peterborough - Lowestoft. Saturday 22nd February .    
Photo copyright : Grahame Bessey.
Some smashing pictures from Grahame this week - here is low mileage 33819 getting away from Norwich on the 11.30 Lowestoft - Peterborough (K19-XL06) 22/2/14
Steve Foster with 33820 departing Norwich at 11.30 westbound on Saturday 22nd February.
 Photo copyright : Grahame Bessey.

Being in Scotland over the weekend 15/16 February, I had to rely on my contacts to view the service. I am very grateful that 100% of services were viewed and reported and many thanks to all concerned for their assistance. There were no reported vehicle swaps, but for a time on Saturday fallen trees were preventing Toftwood, Little Fransham and Necton being served. Thanks to Kieran Smith for the gen. On Monday services were delayed again by roadworks at King's Lynn South Gates roundabout, one lane being coned off. Queues were back to Hardwick for a time.
What we had before ! 37564 looking very smart in its new Lowestoft livery on the X2. 22/2/14.
Photo copyright : Grahame Bessey, 

My return trip also featured the X1 and I was pleased to see Ray Woodhouse and 33808 turn up bang on time at 21.18 on what was a pretty wild wet Monday evening. Departing at 21.19 and leaving Peterborough via Bishop's Road we passed through Eye Green in exactly eleven minutes and this was followed by a fine flail down the deserted A47 to Thorney. Surely we must be on time now ? No ! In fact we were still just over a minute late. Thorney Toll was passed 3 minutes late and we were back to being just over a minute down at Guyhirn. Arrival in Wisbech was on time to the second. Progress beyond here to Walpole Highway was at a more sedate pace thanks to a less demanding schedule and I was dropped off - the only passenger left on board - spot on time. Tuesday saw a couple of late arrivals in Lowestoft reports Malcolm, 33804 was 8 late in on K19 which does the 11.30 to Peterborough  and later 33812 on L8 due at 15.12  came in 12 late. Temporary lights at East Winch Carpenters Arms were more than likely the cause.
On the Dereham diversion (see below),  33813 heads for Peterborough on Wednesday 19th February.
Photo copyright : Andy's Bus Blog.

A rare failure in traffic occurred on Wednesday 19th, 33824 was in trouble at Wisbech at 12.20 with loss of drive. 33818 replaced it to work the 14.31 King's Lynn to Lowestoft. Earlier 33824 had left Great Yarmouth via the bypass to reach the Acle Straight because of an accident near Asda.
33807 was sidelined with power loss for a couple of  days , but was back on Wednesday 19th. Punctuality has been very good and observations from Terrington St. John on Saturday saw King's Lynn bound services passing at 13.39 RT, 14.09 RT, 14.49 RT and 15.18 one minute early. Going west services were seen at 13.39 RT, 14.12 -3, 14.41 -2 & 15.11 -2, so commendable for a long distance route. Sunday night saw an accident at Brundall heavily delay the 17.30 Lowestoft - King's Lynn, due to arrive at 20.40 it rolled in around 22.00. The driver is booked to take the 21.59 to Peterborough after an hours break, but instead Controller David Fields took the last bus westbound.
The Dereham Diversion 2. The 11.00 from Lowestoft  with 33816 on Wednesday 19th photographed by David Bell. 

Part of Dereham Market Place has been closed for gas main work and the disruption which started on Monday is due to last six weeks. X1 services eastbound now call at the stop on the Hollywood Cinema side of the Market Place, while westbound services use Cowper Road instead.
The Dereham Diversion 3. 33812 working Y11 - XL17 12.05 Peterborough - Lowestoft.
Photo copyright : Andy's Bus Blog

Jamie Skinner reports 20514 still operating X1 shorts on Friday 21st and over on the X2 at the start of the week, Yarmouth's 37578 was out, presumably deputising for 37570 which is due an MOT around now, Michael Bryant and Malcolm Hicks both reporting sightings.
33808 about to exit Norwich Bus Station on Saturday 22nd. This was the 11.00 departure to Peterborough (K15-XL02)
Photo copyright : Grahame Bessey.

Finally I must mention King's Lynn driver Bernie Mactavish who is making a speedy recovery from a heart attack, thanks to the prompt actions of Controller, David Fields, Bernie felt ill at work on December 28th and David realising he was having the attack rushed him to the QE Hospital, an action which saved Bernie's life. Congratulations to David on receiving national recognition for his actions and to Bernie on his recovery .
For the EDP article , check out this link

Hero of the hour David Fields (left) with a recovering Bernie Mactavish. Photo copyright : Ian Burt / EDP.

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