Search This Blog


Thursday April 26th 2012 ~ Did I Really See That ?

What a strange day, beginning with 37156 on K1 - normally only a B7 duty on Saturdays. This was because 37569/70 were required to finish at Lynn tonight for work on their drive green systems this evening. During the morning 37576 took L10 10.15 King's Lynn - Peterborough replacing 37577 and then 90 minutes later Y13 had 37568 come off for 37577 forward. Next 37157 on K14 gave way to 37574 fresh off MOT.

This afternoon an accident on Guyhirn bank caused chaos. When I left work I saw 37569 coming into Wisbech from Churchill Road. With the time at 17.06, I assumed this was the 16.56 to Lowestoft running late - wrong - it missed the bus station and proceeded over Freedom Bridge to gain access to the A47 via Wisbech St. Mary. This was an extremely unusual manouevre and it turned out to be the late running K3, 16.48 Wisbech - Peterborough. It had travelled via the A47 bypass to Elme Hall then followed the A1101 to avoid the Guyhirn delay ! Meanwhile at Peterborough railway station, Peter was waiting for K3 17.35 to Wisbech which should have been 37569. At 17.55 37565 arrived on a very delayed K2, about 50 minutes late. Peter asked the driver if he could go to Wisbech, but no the driver said he was going straight through to Lynn as he was so late. "Well will you go down the Wisbech bypass ?" enquired Peter, "My wife could pick me up at one of the laybys ?". "Oh no" responded the driver "We are not allowed to do that". So rather frustrated Peter waited for K3 with 37569. This didn't turn up at the rail station at all and next was K4 with 37572 just a few minutes late on its 18.10 departure time and on time into Wisbech. The driver (Mr. Woodhouse) was jovial and he reminded Peter that from Monday the X1 will not be calling at the rail station while building work is carried out on the station frontage. More news on that as we have it.

Wednesday April 25th 2012 ~ Daily Blog

It is a long time since we had a daily blog, but I will try and do one when time permits. Today Bruce provided a full list of observations and of 26 services seen, 25 were late and one a minute early. Well that sounds pretty terrible, but in fact most were only up to 4 minutes behind time. The heaviest delayed bus was K4 08.35 from Peterborough with 37563 which was 15 late heading east. The previous service, K3 had been 10 late with 37575 and going the other way, Y7 due at 09.04 went sailing by at 09.15 with 37158. Things then improved until late afternoon when K1 15.15 from King's Lynn westbound passed by 12 late with 37567. The early bus was 37576 on K17 15.05 from Peterborough which went by a minute ahead of time. 37157 on L11 did well being 7 late going west but just a minute late coming back.
Y9 had a morning swap at Lynn with 37565 coming off and 37156 replacing it for the 09.45 to Peterborough.
37574 was still awaiting its MOT and 37578 was stopped for a new windscreen. Later 37572 was removed from L12 because its destination screen was blank and 37565 took over.


Sunday 15th April - Tuesday 24th April 2012 ~ Blog Indigestion

With the London Road roadworks in King's Lynn finished, the X1 has reverted to its normal pattern and the period under review has been particularly quiet. Let's have a quick glance at the goings on.......

Sunday 15/4
All B9s today and nothing of note - well that was quick blog !

Monday 16/4
A lot of new adverts today for O2 and BT. 37570 replaced 37578 on K15 and 37157 was spare bus. Peter says "37575 on the 06.13 ex Wisbech to Peterborough this morning. We went via Wisbech bypass rather than Weasenham Lane, but it seems to depend on which driver you get". Malcolm saw Dart 42446 on the 13.38 X2 to Norwich, this turn is the regular one to get an odd bus.

Tuesday 17/4
37566/67/73 were all spare at Lynn today. Mid morning there was an incident. L10 due at Southgates in from Swaffham at 10.03 appeared at 10.36 and was later seen by Bruce 32 late at Terrington. L11 was close behind and was 37156 which was 13 late into Lynn but on time coming back from Peterborough when seen at Walton Highway. 37576 had made up all the lost time by the evening and peter reports it on the 19.50 Lynn - Peterborough as booked.

Wednesday 18/4
37567 was worked on by a Volvo engineer at King's Lynn today and 37574 was stopped there too. 37569 was under examination for an overheating problem. The shuttle bus was in attendance at Lynn in case it was needed for the next phase of roadworks, but this was not used and returned east.

Thursday 19/4
Tree cutting on the Pullover Road caused minor delays this morning. Jamie saw a B9 in a layby at Tilney this morning, but it turned out to be Colin taking a test run with one of today's stopped vehicles, 37567 & 37574.
37569 was taken off K5 this morning with 37568 going forward and later, a revived 37569 took K16 at 16.02 from Lynn to Lowestoft replacing 37158.

Friday 20/4
Grahame Bessey was on hand to capture 20102 departing from Lowestoft at 07.45 this morning.
and even Bruce got the camera out for the occasion - here she is approaching Hardwick.

At last some relief from the low floor monotony today. 37573 was unavailable at Lowestoft this morning and instead L12 07.45 to Peterborough left with 20102 - its first appearance since its transfer from Ipswich to Great Yarmouth.
Our photographers were on the ball as you can see and just as well as 102 was removed at Lynn on its return from Peterborough at 14.00 with a B9 working forward. 36567 & 37574 failed to appear yet again today.

Saturday 21/4
37563 at Norwich  Bus Station working L8 today. Photo : Kieran Smith

37564 was seen today without its T side advert which is quite rare these days. 37573 & 37158 were spare today and 37574 continued its holiday being prepared for an MOT next week. 20102 spent all day in Vancouver Avenue.
Now which one of these would you like to travel to Lowestoft on ?

Sunday 22/4
See last Sunday !!

Monday 23/4
37573 came out of Lowestoft this morning on L8 leaving 37565 spare over there, a rare event nowadays. 20102 was taken back from King's Lynn to Yarmouth  by a spare driver.
37159 had a test run to Tilney this afternoon and Andy James reports a problem with 37577 this afternoon - it was replaced  on K3 by 37160, however, it seems as if 37577 was given the Ok to work the 18.35 to Lowestoft (K2).
37157 had additional passengers on L11 16.55 ex Lowestoft today after a service 8 was spotted in distress in Gorleston with a back window smashed. A youth had let his fold up scooter escape causing the damage. Des was driving L11 and took all the stranded vehicles passengers running all stops to Yarmouth. Y13 was 35 late at Narborough tonight with 37564 after being delayed by an RTA near Dereham. A fresh vehicle was supplied by Lynn to work the 21.50 to Peterborough.

Tuesday 24/4
Our quick blog digest finshes with another ordinary day 37563 was spare at Lynn today and I'm not at all sure what 37577 did, but it has been temperamental the last few days after a very settled spell. The weather was very soggy today and 37159 splashed past Bruce 16 late on K5 this morning.


Monday 9th April 2011 - Saturday 14th April 2011 ~ The King's Lynn Resurfacing

At long last a blog update. The resurfacing of London Road and subsequent closure northbound saw heavy delays on Easter Monday (9th).
An unscheduled meeting at Tilney Flyover between 37570 & 37567 on Easter Monday
One service ran 75 minutes late after negotiating King's Lynn. Surprise of the day was 37156 working Y7. Loan vehicle 36180 returned to Norwich on Saturday 7th.
It was no surprise then when on Tuesday, the X1 ran in chaotic conditions. The day began badly anyway with K5 07.45 westbound from Lynn being cancelled with no driver available. 37574 on Y6 appeared to stick to diagram all day, but it was about the only bus that did. 37570 which had supposedly started on K14 was then seen on L10 13.02 Lynn to Lowestoft. 37575 was at various times noted on K15, K18 and finally K3.
An illustration of the conditions with which drivers had to contend is best illustrated by this report from Des :
" I worked Y6 05.50 Yarmouth - Southgates with 37574. This was on time until queueing traffic at Hardwick Road and then having to wait for an incoming train on Tennyson Avenue leading to an 18 minute late arrival in Lynn. This was reduced to 12 minutes on departure and I then drove out down London Road and owing to a roadworks employee halting traffic across the roundabout, diverted into Hardwick Road where I gave way to my relieving driver, This service then left via Hardwick. Next for me was 37565 on K3 09.37 Southgates to Lowestoft. I could see my bus stuck in traffic way down Nar Ouse Way so I walked down to meet it and boarded at 09.37 near the new park area. We crawled into the town and encountered a delay for the 08.59 King's Lynn - King's Cross train en route. Arrival in the bus station was at 10.10, 46 minutes late !! Departed at 10.12 and although this was the 09.32 running 40 late, I decided to operate as near as I could in the times of K4 10.02 departure. Arrival at Lowestoft was 27 late on K3 timings at 13.07 and the 12.55 westbound left 18 late".

At the eastern end, services seen were 37579 11 late on K19, 37569 on time with K1, 37567 -27 on K2, 37158 31 late on K4, 37566 -15 on K5
37574 appears to have been caught up by 37159 on the following service when Kieran photographed the pair at Norwich this afternoon.

37570 at Norwich bus station this afternoon working L10.

Kieran was viewing proceedings at Norwich and says "Eastbound this afternoon L10 was 37570 and L11 was around 10 late with 37156 and very long queues to board. Heading for Peterborough were 37566, 37158, then 37574 and 37159". It would appear then that 566 had overtaken 158.

Little Dart 43435 rests after a day on X1 shuttles, but surely an opportunity was missed to employ the Routemaster ?

For a time P reg Dart 43435 operated a shuttle service between the Southgates and the Bus Station with the forecourt of Vancouver Avenue becoming a layover point for X1 services. On Wednesday, at 18.10 when I passed the garage 37574, 37156 and 37157 were all in evidence, the latter with X1 Peterborough on the front. Y6 with 37563 was at this point departing from Southgates for Peterborough 20 minutes late and I had just passed K1 with 37568 near The Walks level crossing making slow progress en route to the bus station. In the event it became K2 departing at 18.35 to Lowestoft.
Richard Tucker liases with staff aboard 37572 about to depart westbound today. Photo courtesy of Andy James.
37160 heads a trio of X1 services outside Vancouver Avenue garage today. [Andy James]
37158 passes the ongoing resurfacing work on London Road this afternoon. Photo : Andy James
 Traffic on the western section must have been light as the 15.45 Lynn to Peterborough was 16 late at Terrington with 37571 but only 7 late coming back.
On Thursday I headed west to Herefordshire for the TCC Convention. I passed 37570 on Y7 10.05 ex Peterborough 12 late at Walpole and later found out that it had already done a trip on this section as K1. L10 with 37569 was seen bang on time departing Peterborough. Ryan reports that 43435 was sent to Yarmouth after the closure of Bury St. Edmunds recently before being used in King's Lynn this week.
Des reports that on Friday he drove 37574 on K15 09.25 Lowestoft - Peterborough as far as Southgates. "The service was on time until Hardwick and I arrived at the garage forecourt at 13.05 (due apx 12.50). Passengers for beyond Lynn were walked to London Road to catch the next westbound service, while I took passengers for Lynn only on 43435 to the bus station returning light".
The roadworks continued into Saturday which saw more diagrams swapping vehicles. From Sunday work beyond Millfleet was due to take place at night.


Monday 16th April 2012 ~ Blog to follow

I'm just back from this year's TCC Convention so the blog is running behind. Many thanks to Cheryl, Ian, Bruce, Des, Kieran, Malcolm, Peter & others for keeping me informed - a digest will appear here soon.
Many thanks also to Andy James and Kieran for submitting photographs. Hopefully things will be back to normal in a day or two - which is more than can be said for the King's Lynn roadworks !  G


Stop Press Latest 10/4/12

The major roadworks in King's Lynn involving the closure northbound of London Road has led to an unexpected X1 event. P reg Dart 43435 has arrived from Norwich and is operating a shuttle service between King's Lynn bus station and the Southgates carrying X1 passengers. More news on this as soon as I get time.


Monday 2nd April 2012 - Sunday 8th April 2012 ~ Roads in Chaos

Monday April 2nd

The week began fairly well with minor delays on the western section. Y6 with 37563 was seen passing the Southgates on its way into Lynn from Peterborough at 11.03, a minute after it should have left the bus station for Lowestoft. Viewed in Vancouver Avenue at 16.30 was 37564 having arrived back from repairs at Volvo. 37574 meanwhile is expected to be repaired tomorrow. At the Lowestoft end, 37575 arrived 14 late on L8, departing westbound 4 late and on the X2, services to Norwich left at 14.38 with 30886 and at 15.03 with 30887.
In Lynn, Portand Street is closed for two days meaning a slight diversion and similarly in Dereham, Crown Road is closed for four days. The new timetable now means there are three additional stops for the X1 in Hillcrest Avenue at Toftwood.

Tuesday April 3rd

It's always nice to include pictures from a new X1 fan, Kieran Smith kindly sent in today's photographs. 37566 is seen at Norwich bus station operating K1 today.

37571 always seems to appear in this blog more than most buses. Here it is seen at Norwich heading for Lowestoft on K19 today. [K. Smith]
20115 is still earning its keep on the X1 shorts, seen here about to leave Norwich for Yarmouth today. [K.Smith]
Kieran also captured 34108 between X1 shorts today.

Cheryl says "37564 on Y6 this morning, crammed with pushchairs from Wisbech. Just as we turned to go into Thorney, 37572 on K4 was standing on the side of the road with its passengers disembarked - the driver stopped for a chat and we continued". Turns out 37564 on Y6 was a replacement for 37567 at Lynn, while the problem with brakes binding was rapidly sorted and 37572 was seen passing the Southgates at 10.12 - only about 23 late, not bad considering. 37567 replaced 37572 at the bus station and once checked over 37572 was fit to relive 36180 on K15 at 12.45. K4 was noted departing eastbound with 37567 22 late. L12 with 37563 was 12 late arriving from the coast to work the 11.15 to Peterborough.
Malcolm once again saw 30886 working on the X2, it did the 15.03 to Norwich.

Wednesday April 4th

First change of vehicle noted today was 36180 on K5 being replaced by 37159 for the 10.32 Lynn - Lowestoft. Both Y7 and Y13 swapped vehicles at Lynn 37567 which had its service postponed yesterday came off Y7 for 37577 and Y13 saw 37568 come off for 36180 forward. Y9 with 37158 was 25 late into Yarmouth this afternoon, Des gained a little time thence and it was -18 into Lowestoft.
Mauntenance was at last completed on 37574. At lunchtime I passed 37576 20 late at Walton Highway working L10 eastbound, then shortly after 37570 went by me on L11 having left Wisbech spot on time.

Thursday April 5th 

A47 incidents dogged the service today. Late morning saw 37160 on L10 delayed and it departed Lynn for Lowestoft 27 late at 13.29. 37566 on L12 was replaced by 37159 and 37569 came off K15 for freshly MOTd 37573. 37157 was 13 late into Lowestoft on Y9 and departed back westbound  8 late. Malcolm also saw 30887 on the 13.40 X2 to Norwich. 37565 on Y7 15.25 Lowestoft - Lynn was 17 late from Yarmouth and 14 late into Lynn with Des and 37565. This evening a fatal accident at Wendling saw services take a long diversion via Shipdham and Pickenham and Y13 21.50 Lynn to Peterborough was seen on Nar Ouse Way with 37578 at 22.27, about 31 late. Des says "I was on K4 19.35 King's Lynn to Yarmouth and guessed something was up as all the emergency services passed me".
20115 photographed by Des working the 14.57 Yarmouth - Norwich today.
20102 is now resident at Great Yarmouth so watch out for it on the X1 shuttles. [D Speed]

Good Friday April 6th

The usual hourly service on a Bank Holiday today. Services were in disarray though and when a tractor broke down on the Pullover Road west of Lynn this afternoon, a  local diversion via Eau Brink to reach Saddlebow was instituted. My sister passed 36180 on the diversion which is a very narrow road and traffic was crawling. At Lowestoft 37578 arrived on K5 15 late and later Malcolm saw 37564 departing 'not in service' at 17.00 and 37567 running light at Carlton Colville ! I think 567 should have been the 15.48 service from Lowestoft as this did go empty to Norwich to make up lost time. Des took 37570 from Yarmouth to Lowestoft to do the 16.48 as the incoming bus was over 60 minutes late. Des also saw a B9 running 44 late on the Trowse bypass for the 17.15 Norwich to Lowestoft. All manner of chaos ensued to the local service 1 too. By a strange quirk of fate, King's Lynn had all the B7s in the garage today.

Saturday April 7th

Delays of up to 10 minutes were average today. 37566/9/72 were the buses spare at Lynn.

Easter Sunday April 8th

An all B9 worked service which seemed to run smoothly.


Monday 26th March - Sunday 1st April 2012 ~ Casualties & Replacements

Monday 26th March 2012
K15 (37563) passes L11 (37156) at the Highwayman this lunchtime.
Yesterday's failure of 37574 resulted in it being sidelined today awaiting a new gearbox ecu. This stands for Electronic Control Unit which is basically the brains which makes the thing work. Thanks to Brucey for explaining this to me !
37564 was having a scheduled examination today and has been placed on restricted working pending attention at Volvo. Things not looking good then and 37568 on Y13 had to be replaced by the only spare bus, 37158 for the 11.45 King's Lynn to Peterborough. More disturbingly, my Yarmouth correspondent reports 20126 stopped with a failed gearbox which may spell the end for the B10M.

Tuesday 27th March 2012

Services were in disarray this morning because of an accident on the route near Dogsthorpe when a lorry shed its load. 37160 on K3 08.05 ex Peterborough was seen leaving Wisbech 17 minutes late, then 37565 on the next service (K4) passed Bruce heaving at 10.40 : 65 minutes behind time. Not surprisingly 37159 was provided for K4 forward from Lynn. 3756 on K6 is believed to have travelled directly back to Lynn to regain some time and next past Bruce was 37578 on Y6 at 11.21, due 10.35 so 46 minutes down. L8 was next passing with 37572 at 11.52, a mere 17 late. After this normality resumed with 37576 on Y9 being just 4 late.
37565 was taken off K4 as mentioned above and had attention to its gearbox. 37564 was then pressed into service on K3 at 16.15 to enable 37160 to hotfoot it to Volvo at Norwich for a new oil cooler to be fitted. On the X2 the 09.38 from Lowestoft was Palatine 34156 viewed by Malcolm.

Wednesday 28th March 2012

Shuffling of the limited resources was necessary at Lynn this morning. 37576 diagrammed for K4 had a faulty starter motor, so 37564 was sent for a quick fill in to Peterborough and back before being stopped with a back axle fault which saw it hastily removed to Volvo at Norwich. 37576 was repaired to work K5 and K4 was able to  proceed to Lowestoft at 10.02 with 37563.The latter was reported ailing at Toftwood with its brakes binding, but fitters inspection saw no fault found and 37563 was able to continue. I am told tonight that attempts are being made to secure a loan vehicle from Norwich during this latest crisis. 37160 was back this morning to enable it to work the last Lynn turn, K5.
37159 resting in Vancouver Avenue this evening looking rather odd without any advertising on the nearside. It had worked Y7 today which is the first evening arrival here at shortly after 18.00

Thursday March 29th 2012
37569 is seen shortly after departure from Wisbech on Y6 05.50 Yarmouth - Peterborough this morning. It is travelling along  Elm High Road to reach the Wisbech bypass - see comments from Peter below.
Richard Alger says "It's not very often I'm in Peterborough before nine, but here is 37575 this morning pictured at 08.52" (see Peter's note below !!)

A better day for punctuality, although Peter says "On K4 this morning from Wisbech with the slowest driver EVER, either that or 37575 is poorly. I thought we'd go down Nene Quay now that the temporary lights at Weasenham Lane have gone, but no we came out via Elm Road to the Elme Hall roundabout. Arrived at the rail station at 08.43, so I did make the 08.52 train to Leicester despite the totter". 37575 (pictured above)  did come off at Lynn Peter, but only because it was due a service I think and later it replaced 37578 on K15. K4 itself went forward with 37156 at 10.02. 37574 remained in Vancouver Avenue feeling sorry for itself.
Malcolm's sightings included 37567 on Y9 arriving at its destination 11 late with the 11.05 from Peterborough. 30889 was the 11.08 X2 to Norwich.
37566 on K2 15.45 King's Lynn to Peterborough passing Bruce and myself this afternoon at Walpole.

Friday March 30th 2012
Mr Speed with 37160 on K16 passing Tilney Coach & Horses today, for many years there was a bus stop here.

Punctuality was considerably better than last Friday. 37158 has now got a noisy fan and wont be creeping up on anyone anytime soon ! Here it is today on L12 :

37579 had propshaft repairs before working K5 forward to Lowestoft at 10.32 relieving 37578 for servicing. This was soon done and 578 then replaced 571 for the same reason at 12.45. K4 saw 37576 taken off this afternoon with 37571 going to Peterborough instead at 16.45. In addition to all this 37157 on Y13 ended up on K14 with 37568 doing the opposite, so presumably the latter overtook 157 at some point. Des reports 37159 on K18 being 19 late from Lynn on the 17.02 to Great Yarmouth, but despite the Friday traffic a few minutes had been regained on arrival at Market Gates.
This evening Norwich based 36180 arrived for a second stint  on the X1 and poor old 20126 was officially condemned at Yarmouth where 20102 from Ipswich is expected as replacement.
37579 at King's Lynn garage this evening after working K5.

Saturday March 31st 2012
Just 5 weeks after returning to Norwich, 36180 was back on the X1 today, seen here at Walpole working K5 09.05 from Peterborough.

Services from Peterborough were running about 10 late this morning. 36180 was used on K5, 37573 was stopped for MOT prep at King's Lynn with 37576 being serviced and 37574 still awaiting parts.
Due to water board roadworks near Thorney, 37158 took an alternative route as shown below on K16. Arrival at Wisbech was 8 late, but the service was on time by Lynn. 37156 on K18 was also delayed and was 23 late from Lynn and 15 late into Yarmouth. Thanks to Des for the information and thanks to all our other correspondents this week, Cheryl, Ian, Tony, Malcolm, Matthew, Richard, Peter and Jamie amongst others.

Sunday April 1st 2012
37572 and 37156 at Caister Road before it was decided that the former needed attention.
Possibly the first case of 37156 being mistaken for a B9 because of its Excel livery occurred this morning when Yarmouth despatched it on the 08.30 departure. 37572 was the expected power. Actually this was  a bit of an April Fools day joke, in fact 37572 was unable to work as it required extensive cleaning. 36180 was used on a Lynn internal turn, K3 today. Most services seen were a few minutes late, except the 15.50 Lynn to Peterborough which was spot on time with 37569. 30887 was seen arriving in Lowestoft with the 13.50 X2 from Norwich by Malcolm today.

Looks like this could be fun !.............

 May be we should all fly off for a holiday in Tunisia :