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23rd October - 30th October 2012 ~ Positive Signs

Peter writes : "Hi Gerard, I read recently that your friend Victor Meldrew had complained to Peterborough City Council on a number of occasions about the lack of bus information at Peterborough Railway Station following the multi-million pound refurbishment.
At the time I did think "What a moaning old geezer" but it seems like he's had some success. I think a poster in the (still empty) poster case would have sufficed, but the Council and/or East Coast have gone completely overboard and provided a 32" LCD screen exclusively for X1 !
It's not "real time" though, as the 1635 departure disappeared from the screen at 1636 despite the bus not appearing until 1645 (oh dear, I'm beginning to sound like Mr Meldrew!) 


Hmmm , well it had all gone fairly quiet lately, so I had wondered if our old friend (surely not ?) Victor had may be passed on to another planet where all public transport ran like a dream, when along comes another missive :

Dear Mr Fletcher
I was about to write to write to you to tell you how happy I was (there's a change - Ed) that a new information screen has now been provided at Peterborough railway station, when I tried printing the new X1 timetable. Please see my attachments - the first page printed fine, but every page after that was printed in some sort of hieroglyphic code!
 I thought that perhaps it was my printer or computer so I tried it on a different printer and computer but with the same result. Do you realise how much it costs to print 16 colour pages with the price of ink these days?! Please have a word with your friends at First Group and get them to sort out their website.
Victor Meldrew

Oh well you can't please all the people all the time and you can't please Victor at any time ! Now the first reported appearance of one of the new Paragons on an X1 shuttle occurred on the 22nd when Kieran Smith saw 20515 in service along with veteran B10M 20115. Kieran adds " These shuttles arrive in Norwich bus station from the Queens Road end and depart via Surrey Street exit to reach Bracondale".
On Tuesday 23rd, alll went well until L11-XL17 10.45 King's Lynn - Peterborough which appeared 30 minutes late through Wisbech  with 37158. The services either side ran on time, so the reason for the delay to L11 was not clear. K15-XL02 with 37565 had an adblu sensor fault and was replaced by 37576. At Lowestoft 37570 on K16-XL03was seen arriving 15 late this morning by Malcolm, but this had all been regained by the time it passed me at 13.50. On Wednesday 37564 was taken out of traffic for attention to its injector sleeves and with 37579 still awaiting MOT, this left just one spare bus. First change of vehicle was on K5-XL11 when at 10.32 37160 was relieved by 37156. 37570 on L12-XL18 was unable to continue from King's Lynn to Peterborough at 11.15, so 37160 was summoned to do the Peterborough leg and 37570 was fit again to work to Lowestoft at 14.02. 37563 on K14-XL01 was removed at 15.00 and 37160 then continued its day as the 15.02 to Lowestoft. Most services were a few minutes late, but nothing in excess of 10 minutes was recorded. Remarkably 37157 on Y9-XL15 left Wisbech 4 late on the 10.18 to Peterborough, but returned a few seconds early just before 11.50. On Thursday, morning services in the west suffered minor delays. Temporary traffic lights at the entrance to Wisbech Horsefair bus station and also on Nene Quay didn't help matters. By the afternoon things had improved although an accident at North Tuddenham caused tailbacks for westbound services. 37575 on K5-XL11 was halted at Eau Brink at 17.30 with a snapped alternator belt, so 37576 went out to replace it. After completing K5, 37576 then replaced 37571 on Y6-XL12, the 20.35 to Great Yarmouth. 37579 was back on the road after a morning MOT replacing 37565 on  K15-XL02 12.45 King's Lynn - Peterborough etc. At Lowestoft 37159 was seen on Y7-XL13 and L8-XL14 was also, most unusually, a B7 with 37158 and this arrived 17 late.37157 on K18-XL05 departed Lynn 5 late on the 17.02 to Yarmouth and arrived here 14 late due to traffic conditions.

Friday 26th saw 37574 on L8-XL14 in trouble at Peterborough with a water leak. 37565 took the 10.35 to Lowestoft forward, starting at either Wisbech or Lynn. Punctuality was average with a poor spell at lunchtime when K15-XL02 (37566) was 15 late in both directions through Wisbech and Y13-XL19 13.05 ex Peterborough (37567) passed through eastbound 19  late. 37571/8 were undergoing safety services at Vancouver Avenue. 37158 was losing time again, this time on Y9-XL15 - it was 20 late arriving at Lowestoft and 10 late departing westbound. 37157 on Y7-XL13 was also an offender today, 19 late into King's Lynn from Lowestoft at 18.26, not helped by an 8 minute delay waiting to exit Hockering back onto the A47.  Three Enviro 200 single deckers with Lowestoft branding entered service here today on locals. Noted were 45117/8/9.
On to Saturday and I had a journey to the Midlands to watch Aston Villa v. Norwich. I passed K4-XL10 in both directions with 37578, as well as a few others. Services ran reasonably and the only swap was on K18-XL05 which exchanged 37156 for 37159 this afternoon. 37567 & 37159 required replacement windscreens. 
Kieran Smith has kindly provided us with some pictures taken today :
37158 at Norwich on K1-XL07. This diagram is only allocated a B7 on Saturdays when it terminates at Lowestoft. [K.Smith]
37572, still with 'Savages' advert heads for Peterborough on K14-XL01 08.55 from Lowestoft [K. Smith]
Remember these ? Well 60814 was one of the vehicles in use on X1 shuttles today. Many thanks to Kieran for the photographs. 
On Sunday 37579 once again had water problems and 37571 replaced it. The half term week began with lighter traffic and 37565 on Y6-XL12 09.35 from Peterborough came into Wisbech at 10.18 (2 minutes early) which is possibly a record. A trio of B7s mid morning saw 37157/9/8 appearing on Y9-XL15, L10-XL16 & L11-XL17. Y9 was 21 late going east, while L10 was just 3 late and L11 14 late westbound. These were the worst delays I noted but Des adds "An RTA at Guyhirn caused problems and the Acle Straight was closed by a similar incident from 14.00 - 22.00, I was supposed to drive 37159 on L10-XL16, but this was 30 late, so instead when 37158 came in empty to Vancouver Avenue at 13.55 having been on L11-XL17, I took this instead going light to Norwich arriving at 15.05. Here Y9-XL15 was just departing, so after consultation with Lynn control I went light via the A146 to Lowestoft to form Y9's return working at 15.55. 37157 meanwhile was seen in Gorleston by now running a whopping 95 late !"
To bring us up to date, Tuesday October 30th was an A47 day with broken down vehicles at Guyhirn and Blofield causing delays. 37158 on K5-XL11 09.05 Peterborough - Lowestoft came into Wisbech 17 late and was 24 late from Lynn eastbound  Y6-XL12 may have travelled via Wisbech St. Mary as it was not noted on the usual route. There was quite a business this morning when 37159 failed en route on K16-XL03 - it is believed to have had a faulty drivers seatbelt. 37157 and 37565 were despatched from King's Lynn and 37159 was seen in a layby near the Mattishal turn by Nick Youngman. 37565 eventually took over K16 and was seen by Malcolm departing Lowestoft 17 late on the 09.55 to Peterborough. 37159's ailment was sufficiently trivial to enable it to resume working K16 at 13.15 from King's Lynn. 37565 was later seen on K3-XL09 having relieved 37567. Malcolm also reports Y7-XL13 with 37576 arriving at Lowestoft 22 late, having been only 6 late when seen at Wisbech. X2s were also delayed today typified by Palatine 34156 arriving 22 late on the 13.10 from Norwich. The following service was only 5 late, remarkably with another veteran, 34155. Another smart new arrival 44928 was seen on town services today.


16th - 22nd October 2012 ~ Piling on the Miles

The very first advert to be fitted to an X1 Gemini was for the 22nd Bond film Quantum of Solace back on November 13th 2008. Now four years on it's time for  the 23rd title seen adorning 37566 here.
With X1 vehicles due for replacement next year, it will be interesting to see if any of the present fleet notch up half a million miles. This will depend on when the new buses arrive - when the 17 X1 liveried Geminis arrived, it wasn't until October and if this is replicated, several will easily pass this mileage.
As it stands the mileage table is headed by 37572 which has amassed over 470,000 miles. Several of its original King's Lynn stablemates are hot on its heels, closest being 37579 on almost 469k. This is followed by : 37575 464k, 37578 & 37574 463k and 37573 462k. Next comes the highest mileage of the former Lowestoft allocation, this honour belonging to 37567 which has done 458k. The remainder are as follows :

37570 458k
37565 449k
37568 448k
37576 447k
37569 444k
37563 436k
37564 434k
37577 423k
37566 420k
37157 398k
37160 390k
37158 374k
37159 366k
37156 362k
37571 318k

These are thousands in miles, not kilometres. For those of you not quite as obsessed by figures as me, I ought to point out that 37572 has travelled 756k kilometres ! 37571 was the bus involved in the Thorney accident hence its low mileage - it was off the road for 15 months and was given a new cab already fitted with a speedo reading 31,000 more than that actually travelled by 37571, so this adjustment of subtracting 31,000 from the actual reading has to be made to obtain an accurate figure. It is also quite amazing that 37572 has now run 50,000 miles more than 37566. The latter has always been unlucky and on its first day in service failed (24.10.08). It was on the road three weeks before 37572.
It is hardly surprising perhaps that minor ailments at last seem to be on the increase with the B9s. On the evening of Tuesday 16th 37563 failed at Thorney with a burst water pipe whilst on L8 (XL14). The turn resumed at 21.35 from King's Lynn to Gorleston JPH with 37568 which had come off K5 (XL11). 37572 & 37573 were serviced today and K1 (XL07) began with 37578 but this only managed a trip from Lynn to Peterborough and back before being replaced by 37157. At 12.15, 37579 had to be taken off K14 (XL01) with a water system fault and 37578 was fit to take over. Timekeeping was very good with only minor delays, despite roadworks with temporary lights at Necton.
Wednesday 17th was not so good for punctuality. Y6 (XL12) is normally good for timekeeping, but the last few weeks have seen a marked deterioration, presumably due to morning peak traffic in King's Lynn and Wisbech. 37568 departed 12 late from Wisbech westbound this morning at 09.00 and going east at this time was K3 (XL09) with 37574 also 10 late. By this evening a change had occurred and 37567 was on this turn. This was delayed at Walsoken by an ill passenger on the 16.15 from King's Lynn to Peterborough. Back to the morning and Y9 (XL15) with 37157 contrived to be 19 late from Wisbech on the 10.18 to Peterborough. things then reverted to timetable until K15 (XL02) 13.18 departure which left 15 late with 37577. There were a lot of swaps today. 37566 had an adblu problem whilst working K17 (XL04) and at 13.45 was replaced by Tuesday night's poorly bus 37563. K5 (XL11) had 37569 taken off at teatime for a rejuvenated 37566 to run from Lynn to Peterborough and back at 17.15. Finally Y6 (XL12) had 37568 taken off at 20.30 and 37156 went forward at 20.35 to Lowestoft.
Thursday 18th saw some services delayed, but others run on time or even slightly early ! Again Y6 (XL12) was delayed this morning and the 08.48 to Peterborough didn't get away from Wisbech until almost 09.00 with 37565. Mid morning saw a trio of B7 workings heading west. Y9 (XL15) with 37159 was 8 late, L10 (XL16) had 37158 and L11 (XL17) with 37156 passed me at 11.37, 17 late. Of the other B7s, 37157 on K16 (XL03) managed a rare on time appearance, but 37160 on K18 (XL05) came through 15 late. Traffic on the Peterborough section must have been light, 37570 on K17 (XL04) was 7 late departing Wisbech on the 14.18 westbound, but came back a minute early. Today's A47 roadworks with traffic light control were at Little Fransham.  The water system fault on 37579 saw it  being stripped down at Vancouver Avenue while 37574 joined it over the pits with an adblu fault.
Punctuality was better than the average on Friday 19th and it was not until late afternoon that delays began to build. About the worst of these was 37158 on K3 (XL09) which was 11 late into Lynn from Lowestoft to form the 16.15 to Peterborough. It was noted leaving Wisbech 15 late. 37160 had air pressure problems at Yarmouth first thing and it was eventually able to work Y9 (XL15). An accident near Thorney apparently caused delays in the early evening and 37568 on K4 (XL10) needed cleaning on arrival at Lynn, so 37567 worked forward to Lowestoft at 19.35. Christine spotted old friend coach 20115 still earning its keep on an X1 short today, seen in Norwich at 08.20.
On Saturday early morning services were on the dot. I nearly fainted with shock when K5 (XL11) 09.05 Peterborough - Lowestoft (37160) and L8 (XL14) 09.48 Wisbech - Peterborough (37567) both passed each other at the Clarkson memorial both running a minute early. Overall things seemed to run fairly well. Once again Christine noted 20115 in use on the shorts - doubtful if it will get another MOT ? 37579 will be getting an extended break from service as it is now on MOT prep. Sunday saw nothing noteworthy and Monday 22nd saw another bad start to the week for Y6 (XL12)  05.50 ex Great Yarmouth with 37569 crawling in a queue into Wisbech 15 late. K3 (XL09) going east was similarly 14 late with 37159. This was as bad as it got though and the rest of the day went quite well. 37569 had to be removed from Y6 (XL12)  tonight and 37158 off K5 (XL11) was its replacement.
Many thanks to Malcolm and Cheryl for their help this week.


7th - 15th October 2012 ~ A Service to be Proud Of

Several people have contacted me recently in praise of the X1. Steve says "Can't praise the X1 enough, I can't drive now due to a health condition and as I'd always been a car driver, I'd failed to realise what a great service the X1 gives. I'm now a regular user and suddenly, losing my ability to drive no longer seems like the end of my world". Vicky is also impressed by the service, she says " Am I the only person who has travelled all the way from Wisbech to Lowestoft ?" - well no as we have seen recently, she continues "it's a brilliant service and if they had a fan club I'd be a member". Can't be bad Vicky. Just lately punctuality and reliability has not made for an exciting blog, but at least it has been good for the passengers.

Sunday 7th
On the evening of 6th, 37157 was failed at Peterborough on Y10 (XL16) with an electrical fault. It had to be towed in by a recovery team in the early hours of Sunday. 37158 saw unusual use on Sunday - it worked Y8 (XL08 Sun) until it ws removed at King's Lynn as it required a Monday morning examination. 37566 worked the turn forward. 37564 was stopped for MOT today.

Monday 8th

37158 was released off maintenance to work K5(XL11) and it then had an extended day by replacing 37570 on L8(XL14). The reason for this change was to enable the all over rear ad (or what remained of it) to be removed. Y7(XL13) had a change of vehicle after 37573 failed at Swaffham with loss of power - a turbo intercooler pipe needed replacing. 37567 is thought to have been used to replace it. 37157 was given a clean bill of health after repairs.

Tuesday 9th

37157 was back on the road working K3(XL09) today. K18(XL05) had 37160 swapped for 37563 for servicing requirements. 37577 on K2(XL08) suffered a water leak at Wisbech just after 18.00 and 37573 worked forward from Lynn at at 18.35. Y6(XL12) with 37565 was the most delayed service noted, 12 late from Wisbech on the 08.48 to Peterborough, but just 5 late returning.

Wednesday 10th
King's Lynn garage have taken delivery of this smart dedicated fleet support van for those odd occasions when the X1 misbehaves.
Not a bad day and only one vehicle swap,  37576 coming off Y13(XL19) at 21.45 for a sister to do the final leg to Peterborough and back. Over at Lowestoft things weren't quite as good with K16(XL03) arriving 19 late and departing 10 late on the 09.55 to Peterborough, but by the time it reached me it was down to 6 late. The bus was 37158. Most services seen at Lowestoft were slightly late, 37568 on K17(XL04) was 6 late in and 37160(XL05) on K18 8 late. 37563 on Y6(XL12) this afternoon managed to be on time, but 37159 was 18 late in on Y7(XL13) and 10 late going back to King's Lynn.

Thursday 11th

37564 had its MOT this morning and was then fit to replace 37571 on K15(XL02). The other rested buses today were 37565 & 37576 for servicing. Last week Dennis Trident 33165 spent a week on the X2 on loan and today Malcolm reports 33057 in Lowestoft bus station, believed to be a new reallocation  from Norwich to replace two Darts which have gone the other way.

Friday 12th

By Friday standards, not a bad day for timekeeping. Passing Wisbech  K18(XL05) and 37159 was 14 late westbound and had made up a minute returning east to do the 16.26 to Yarmouth. K1(XL07) with 37573 was 17 late on the 15.48 to Peterborough, but everything else ran fairly well. 37576, 37578 and 37157 were the spare buses today. At Lowestoft, Malcolm viewed several services but only 37564 on K17(XL04) was behind time to the tune of 9 minutes. Des says "It was me on K18(XL05) and the catalogue of woe is as follows : 37159 departed Southgates 7 late, congestion into Wisbech departed -14, Arrived Peterborough 15.41 and explained to rail station passengers we would be going there after loading. Departed to rail station at 15.49 and left there at 15.53. 14 late from Wisbech at 16.40. Departed Lynn bus station at 17.10, just 8 late but then took 14 minutes to reach Southgates due to Friday peak traffic. My journey home was with 37573 on K1(XL07) on which we departed Southgates 14 late and never regained much time. 9 late into Great Yarmouth as a result".

Saturday 13th

I admit to seeing very little today, but my correspondents kept me posted. 37565 and 37569 swapped turns at some point today with them ending up on K14(XL01) and Y13(XL19).

Sunday 14th

A nice all B9 worked day : 37563/4/7/8/9. 37571/2/5/7/8 were in use. Brasenose Avenue in Gorleston was shut today necessitating a diversion via Middleton Road. The new X1 timetable headings all show Peterborough - Lowestoft and no westbound service, fortunately the times themselves are correct.

Monday 15th

Driver illness forced the cancellation of L12(XL18) 07.45 Lowestoft - Peterborough as far as Norwich where one of the King's Lynn controllers came to the rescue with 37157. This was later taken off the duty and was seen lurking in Vancouver Avenue at 15.30. Later passengers waiting for Y6(XL12) 17.45 King's Lynn - Peterborough were boarding 37568 when it was decided to replace it with 37566. Howard Street in Yarmouth closed for resurfacing meant more diversions and the Hardwick roundabout is once again closed to evening traffic from 20.00 until 26th.


New X1 Timetable with enhanced frequency in the East !

In addition to the daytime half hourly Lowestoft - Peterborough service, there are of course the so called X1 shorts linking Gorleston, Great Yarmouth and Norwich at peak times. Well from 14th October, these additional services are being augmented into a regular frequency timetable which will mean extra services from Yarmouth at 27 & 57 minutes past the hour and eastbound from Norwich at 10 & 40 minutes past the hour.


1st - 6th October 2012 ~ Standby Coaches

Such is the reliablilty of the X1 fleet of Geminis, coach substitutions are now almost unknown. The last one recorded on a Peterborough run was on Friday April 20th and this only reached King's Lynn from the East before being removed. and you have to go back to December 6th 2011 to find the last time a coach worked the entire route.
20102 & 20115 based at Great Yarmouth have been regulars on the X1 short runs to Norwich, but this week, the first signs of change appeared with the arrival of Paragons 20514 & 20515 from Worcester. The former was actually loaned to the X1 route in 2010 when it worked during August filling in the period between the departure of loan Gemini 37562 and the return to service of 37571 after major repairs following the Thorney accident of May 2009.
It would seem likely that the newer coaches will join the remaining B10Ms at Great Yarmouth on the shuttles. Nevertheless, the likelihood of them appearing on the X1 is minimal as has been the case with coaches all year as outlined above.
Gemini 37579 worked on 35 consecutive days up to Saturday, but such long spells in service are rare nowadays.
This week has been fairly uneventful, so another nice easy blog to write.
Monday 1st October.
This was the only day of the week where there was any significant disruption. A serious accident on the Pullover Road between Eau Brink and the Pullover (Freebridge) roundabout at around 07.50 saw the A47 closed and diversions set up, presumably through Tilney All Saints. This threw the X1 into chaos of course and the first through service from the coast, Y6-XL12 finally managed to get away from Wisbech westbound 29 minutes late with 37564 which had left Yarmouth on Y7-XL13 ! Following it were Y7 with 37577 (off Y6) 31 late, L8-XL14 with 37578 25 late, Y9-XL15 with 37160 21 late, L10-XL16 37567 14 late and L11-XL17 37158 20 late before normality returned with L12-XL18 and 37568 running on time.
Early eastbound delays included 37571/9/0 which were all observed heading east within half a mile of each other at 09.23, the first two 'not in service'. These were K1-XL07, K19-XL06 & K2-XL08 respectively.
37157 was on time on K3-XL09 from Wisbech but had lost 25 minutes by the time it passed the Southgates inbound at 09.49. K4-XL10 with 37565 similarly lost 26 minutes over the same section. Des adds "At 10.50 37566 pulled into the garage with a handful of passengers. Though this was the K5-XL11 10.32 ex Lynn, the driver had managed to get to Lynn and load. I then spoke to the passengers, explaining that we were going back to Lynn in order to operate my turn, the 11.02 (Y6-XL12) as an on time service. Not one complaint from them. Left on time"
By the time the delayed westbound services began to reappear eastbound, the earlier delays were still in evidence. Eastbound from Wisbech were Y6-XL12 31 late, Y7-XL13 24 late, L8-XL14 16 late, Y9-XL15 16 late, L10-XL16 6 late and L11-XL17 12 late.
Whilst all this was going on, K2-XL08 had 37575 which was running late replaced by 37570 for the 09.02 to Lowestoft, unfortunately this only got as far as Swaffham where it was failed with a brake fault. 37572 went out to the rescue and later this was itself replaced by 37160 for the 15.45 King's Lynn - Peterborough. So four buses worked K2 today !
As one might expect 37575 off late running K2-XL08 became K3-XL09 and 37157 off K3-XL09 became K4-XL10 until replaced by 37579 at teatime. 37565 switched from K4-XL10 to become K5-XL11 and this layover procedure continued until L10-XL16 which ran through as booked. 37160 off Y9-XL15 then became spare until used on K2-XL08 later.There wasn't much wrong with 37570 as later it replaced 37579 on K19-XL06.
37159 was kept in all day for a gearbox hose to be replaced and when 37572 came off K2-XL08 this afternoon it was diagnosed with a ring gear problem.
From 1st - 12th October, Hardwick Roundabout is closed from 20.00 - 06.00 with services using Nar Ouse Way to get to the A47, while from 1st for five nights, the Norwich Southern Bypass is closed between Postwick and the A146. X1s diverted via Thorpe Road.
Tuesday 2nd October
Peter writes " Out early this morning for K3-XL09 with 37567, departed Walsoken on time but sat in Wisbech bus station until leaving at 07.22. Full credit to our driver, he was waiting connections as several people boarded just before we left - coming from the rail industry I find this concept bizarre - waiting for connections, whatever next ?"

Well it makes a change from all those films ! This striking advertising campaign was originally used by Stonewall to counteract bullying in schools and is now being used to promote the campaign for gay marriage legislation. It now adorns ten X1 Geminis and has turned a few heads.
All services ran to within 5 minutes of time today after yesterday's disruption. Only 37160 on L11-XL17 failed this target being 7 late to Peterborough, but only 3 late coming back. L8-XL14 arrived in Lynn with 37569 this morning, but 37572 then took over for the leg to Peterborough before 37569 returned to the diagram. 37572 was then booked to go to Volvo for attention.
37571 arrives at Wisbech with Y6-XL12 05.50 from Great Yarmouth today.

Wednesday 3rd October
A quieter day with just a few swaps. 37575 was one of these and started on Y7-XL13 then took over K15-XL02. 37573 off maintenance took Y7-XL13 forward and K15-XL02 had 37568 taken off for the same purpose. Tonight 37566 was in trouble with a suspected puncture at Toftwood on K2-XL08 and fitters attended. Mid afternoon, K5-XL11 with 37159 was seen leaving Yarmouth 15 late with temporary lights on the west side of Haven Bridge causing delays into the town. 37564 on L8-XL14 was diverted out of Norwich as mentioned above and was 10 late arriving at its destination, the JPH.

Thursday 4th October
Punctuality was very good in the west today and even late departures from Lowestoft, K16-XL03 with 37159 which left 15 late and K18-XL05 with 37158 which was 10 late made up time. 37579 came off K14-XL01 for 37574 but there were no other changes. Y7-XL13 with 37576 took 9 minutes to load in Norwich and left 5 late with congestion making a slightly late arrival in King's Lynn.

Friday 5th October
37572 returned from repairs at Volvo today and requires a full inspection before returning to service. Timekeeping was good today with a few late morning delays, but then things ran smoothly until an accident on the Pullover roundabout caused delays at teatime. K19-XL06 with 37575 finished at the coast and 37563 off K2-XL08 came back on the last Lowestoft - King's Lynn.
L8-XL14 had 37567 taken off duty tonight with a cracked screen, 37566 off Y7-XL13 went forward. At Lowestoft there were two late running B7s, the worst being L11-XL17 with 37159 arriving 15 late and departing 9 late.

Saturday 6th October
Pretty good timekeeping today with only a morning swap on L8-XL14, 37575 coming off for 37567.


23rd - 30th September 2012 ~ Nicely Thankyou

The last week of September was pretty uneventful, so a quick blog to keep you up to date ...

Sunday 23rd September : For some reason, 37566 was not used by Great Yarmouth today and instead B7 37157 was turned out for the diagram which finishes early at King's Lynn at 20.44. It is quite a while since a B7 worked on a Sunday. Syd returned 66346 from Lowestoft to Norwich after its holiday. 42450 came back from Yarmouth to Lowestoft to compensate.

Monday 24th September : Things went very well today and were monitored by Bruce. 37565 is having MOT work done this week, while 37158 and 37564 were kept in for exams. No swaps were recorded.

Tuesday 25th September : 37576 had to be taken out of traffic today (it was working K19-XL06) when it's propshaft failed. 37572 replaced it. 37563 was required for servicing and this meant after lunch 37159 ended up on K15-XL02 which is unusual. Timekeeping was excellent today with no delays noted on any of the 19 turns.

Wednesday 26th September : An extremely rare occurence today was 37158 on Y9-XL15 terminating at Lowestoft due to a driver shortage, I'm pretty certain that in order to balance things, the 19.10 Peterborough - Lowestoft terminated at King's Lynn with 37571. Once again punctuality was exceptional and only K19-XL06 with 37578 ran late through Wisbech - it was 12 late on th 15.18 to Peterborough, but just 7 late coming back.

Thursday 27th September : Another good day for the timetable summed up by K18-XL05 with 37160 which was marginally early past me this afternoon on the 14.48 Wisbech - Peterborough. 37572/6/9 are all scheduled to have tachograph calibration over the next few days. Malcolm reports Lowestoft's sole remaining Palatine, 34155, on the 101 town service today.

Friday 28th September : A few services were delayed by up to 10 minutes today, but again considering it was a Friday things ran acceptably well. 37570 on L11-XL17 was 12 late through Wisbech on the 11.18 to Peterborough.  37576 was repaired very quickly and was out again today initially on K1-XL07 but by this afternoon it had dropped down to K2-XL08. 37575 started the day on K5-XL11 but was replaced by 37572 at 10.32 after its tachograph check. 37575 later appeared on K1-XL07 28 late, the only timekeeping casualty of the day. 37565 off MOT appeared on K4-XL10. Des reports K18-XL05 with 37157 running 15 late from King's Lynn on the 17.02 to Great Yarmouth where it arrived 19 late due to the Friday traffic.
37567 at Peterborough Queensgate this afternoon on K14-XL01 13.35 Peterborough - Lowestoft.
Photo courtesy of Ian Hignett

Saturday 29th September. There were a few delays today, but all seemed to run fairly well except K17-XL04 with 37569 which departed Wisbech at 14.40 on the 14.18 to Peterborough. A morning incident on the Acle Straight didn't seem to affect services much. Des writes "37567 for me on K14-XL01 08..55 Lowestoft - Peterborough. we were on time until Dereham where traffic was heavy, then at Swaffham an influx of around 15 youngsters all with £5 or£10 notes for a £4.40 fare - it all takes time. After this exiting fromNarborough onto the A47 was delayed by a 40mph Tesco lorry and trailing traffic. We were 6 late from King's Lynn bus station at 12.21. Later my booked service of K18-XL05 17.02 Lynn - Great Yarmouth ended up taking K17 (XL04)s passengers as this went non-stop to Norwich. Its passengers joined me at the Southgates and K18-XL05 departed here 5 minutes late with around 30 pasengers having joined. Arrival at Great Yarmouth was 12 late.
Another of Ian's Saturday sightings : 37568 working K16-XL03 09.55 from Lowestoft on arrival at Peterborough.
[I Hignett]

Sunday 30th September. An uneventful day with an all B9 worked service and no swaps. Work has been ongoing this week on checking the heaters on the fleet in preparation for the colder weather.