|Running nicely to time on Tuesday 9th July, 37575 is seen at Great Yarmouth working L10 11.38 from Peterborough. Photo copyright Joe Leathers.
The evening roadworks on Guyhirn Bank have now ceased but the diversion is in operation for another three weeks while Cromwell Road (for those unfamiliar with the area, this is the route the X1 takes out of Wisbech past the Tesco store), is similarly resurfaced and given an overhaul. The diversions are in use from 20.00 - 06.00.
|Shortly before it was sidelined for repairs, 37160 is seen at Norwich bus station at 07.45 on Thursday 11th working the 06.45 Gorleston JPH - Peterborough (Y9-XL15). Photo : Joe Leathers.
Friday services looked to have run fairly well in the heat , but some delays were caused by a lunchtime accident on the A47 at Postwick. Y6-XL12 looks to have been worked by three different Geminis today, 37570 came into King's Lynn having worked from Yarmouth at 05.50, but this was then taken off - 37570 has been a rare performer of late due to an unknown malady. 37569 took Y6 forward, but later this was swapped for 37572 which had come in on Y7-XL13, the 18.07 arrival at King's Lynn, later doing the 20.35 to Lowestoft. Earlier 37160 had been viewed near Middleton on K5-XL11 at 17.27 - it is due to depart King's Lynn for Peterborough at 17.12. 37160 may have been poorly as 37577 took the service forward from Lynn.
The sun brought out the day trippers on Saturday 13th and almost predictably, an accident between two vehicles on the King's Lynn Bypass at lunchtime caused eastbound queues. These were of masssive proportions and at one stage, the travelling time between the Pullover Roundabout with the A17 and Hardwick Roundabout was 90 minutes ! The X1 had to contend with the aftermath of this too and did remarkably well considering. The passing times at Wisbech of the affected services was as follows :
L8-XL14 37565 -1 / -12
L9-XL15 37578 -8 / -11
Y10-XL16 37567 -11 / -17
L11-XL17 37159 -9 / -4
L12-XL18 37572 -6 / -1
Y13-XL19 37576 -35 / -28
K14-XL01 37579 -22 / -17
K15-XL02 37563 -20 / -12
K16-XL03 37157 -16 / -16
K17-XL04 37571 -15 outward to Peterborough
The early delays were purely down to traffic levels and L11 and L12 did very well to regain time. The effect of the traffic jams at Lynn can be seen on Y13 and the following services, but all except K16 made up some time before returning eastbound. L9 with 37578 passed me at 12.01 and normally this would appear on the Southgates webcam about 30 minutes later, however, it eventually got there by travelling via South Lynn where it was seen emerging from the exit at 12.55.
A further accident at Blofield did nothing to improve things and 37158 on K5-XL11 was seen by Malcolm Hicks arriving at Lowestoft 26 late and departing -12. 37574 on Y6-XL12 was 12 late in and Y7-XL13 which was 37568 did not reach its destination. 37579 had a funny day, initially on K4-XL10 for a trip to Peterborough and back to Lynn, it was then replaced by the shy 37570. 37579 then took K14-XL01 at 12.15 to Peterborough in place of 37566. It then managed to overtake 37576 on Y13-XL19, so 37579 then took Y13 with 37576 becoming K14. Des sends us his own report on Saturday's chaos : "37576 Yarmouth depot - Light to Lowestoft then Y13-XL19 08.25 Lowestoft to Southgates - On time till slow A47 traffic from Swaffham to Lynn. Picked up oncoming driver, took bus into Lynn, Loaded passengers, drivers changed, departed Lynn -6 (11.48)", So judging from my observations it lost a further 29 minutes before it passed me leaving Wisbech !!
Des continues :"37565 L12-XL18 14.07 Southgates - Lowestoft - A47 closed between Saddlebow & Pullover, much disruption. Bus came empty into garage with Yarmouth driver at 13.45 off L8-XL14, (Gosh it came into Wisbech at 11.32 !! G) then operated from the bus station as the 14.00 Lynn departure. I continued with 37565 as the 17.25 Lowestoft - Yarmouth on time. This short always catches passengers out, especially Gunton Tesco for Pleasurewood Hills closing time. I left more people that wanted to travel to Norwich than I carried passengers to Yarmouth !!"
There was just one swap on Sunday when 37563 with a loose wing mirror on K6-XL06 was changed at Lynn at 11.30 for 37572. I had a trip to Peterborough to visit the vintage bus rally at Sacrewell Farm, travelling on Y7-XL07 with 37565, we were 3 late from Walpole, 6 late arriving at Peterborough bus station but on time by the rail station where I got off. Unusually 37156 was turned out by Great Yarmouth for Y9-XL09 and timekeeping was poor as a result. I came back on the 17.15 from Peterborough (K2-XL02)with 37566 (yes haunting me now !) on which we departed a minute early. This clever ploy by our driver meant we were on time at Thorney, Guyhirn and arriving in Wisbech !
|This Lowestoft driver kindly paused in front of a group of bus photographers whilst departing Queensgate with 37577 on the 16.15 to Lowestoft. What a nice gesture and we got a friendly wave too.
|37566 departs Peterborough on the 17.15 to Great Yarmouth on Sunday. The 'dark skies' advert applied on March 23rd has yet to be replaced. Photograph copyright : Mark Chaplin.
Wednesday July 17th was remarkable in that no bus ran more than 5 minutes late through Wisbech and in fact some services were fractionally early. The 10.25 from Lowestoft (K17-XL04)was 3 early arriving at the Southgates this afternoon with 37565. Cheryl reports a wheelchair passenger boarding at Wisbech on Y6-XL12 08.49 to Peterborough 'twirly' as she puts it and the bus was momentarily delayed as the passenger disembarked not prepared to pay. The first free bus to Peterborough for senior citizen pass holders is the 09.49.
There was more punctual running on Thursday and of the 18 buses travelling past me westbound between 08.50 & 15.50, almost all were on time, the exceptions being K3-XL09 with 37156 at 08.59, K14-XL01 with 37573 at 12.56 and K16-XL03 with 37159 at 15.26. Once again K4-XL10 started the day with a B7, this time 37157 but 37567 was fit to replace it during the day. X2 services are being disrupted due to a road collapse at the moment, of 8 services seen today by Malcolm, seven were running late by up to 13 minutes.
As usual Friday was not so good on the timekeeping front, but only one service ran appreciably out of course during what is usually the dodgy time in the early afternoon.. K14-XL01 with 37572 came back from Peterborough 19 late past me at 14.39. Earlier the day had started badly with an A47 accident at East Winch which was announced on Radio Norfolk as ' affecting the X1 bus service'. 37564 on Y6-XL12 05.50 from Great Yarmouth was 20 late at Wisbech because of this. Y7-XL13 was seen with 37567 returning from Peterborough at 11.18, 28 late and L8-XL14 which was 37579 went westbound 32 late at 10.22 with 37568 on Y9-XL15 following it at 10.33. Peter texted me later to say 37578 had arrived on time at King's Lynn bus station for the 16.42 to Peterborough (K4-XL10), only for it to be replaced by 37576 which also left on time.
The sidelining of B7 37160 meant that K18-XL05 had a B9 every day this week except Friday and both Y7 -XL13 and Y9-XL15 were entirely covered by B9s. 37570 has recovered from its unknown ailment and has been out all week, while 37579 spent Sunday to Wednesday at King's Lynn for repairs.
My thanks to all our regular correspondents, particularly Bruce (who after two weeks in Cos is back refreshed waving at X1 drivers ) and Malcolm, Cheryl and Des.