Author Topic: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017  (Read 16767 times)

Offline al_557

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Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« on: January 17, 2017, 08:52:28 PM »
Ex Peterborough dart 35104 (AE06WXP) broke down on London road whilst operating the 73.
A driver friend of mine told me that all the 53 reg darts will be withdrawn by the end of the year although he didn't say what would be replacing them

Offline chopper

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2017, 07:08:02 PM »
I travelled on the X5 today between St. Neots and Bedford. To my surprise the coach (54314) travelled direct from St Neots to Bedford on the A421 and not passing through Great Barford although scheduled to do so. I also noted another X5 going in the opposite direction taking the same route. Has anyone any idea why there is this deviation from the scheduled route?

In addition the the 14:56 from Bedford to Cambridge had St Neots in the destination panel. What it turned short perhaps?  I did notice a long tailback of traffic on the eastbound carriageway of the A421 stretching back from the Black Cat roundabout.

Any comments would be welcome. Thanks

Chris

Offline TCD813

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2017, 07:16:44 PM »
I travelled on the X5 today between St. Neots and Bedford. To my surprise the coach (54314) travelled direct from St Neots to Bedford on the A421 and not passing through Great Barford although scheduled to do so. I also noted another X5 going in the opposite direction taking the same route. Has anyone any idea why there is this deviation from the scheduled route?
...
Any comments would be welcome. Thanks

Chris

To be honest, Chris, I have no idea. It may be that there were two seriously delayed services, one  in each direction, taking the bypass to gain time, with the following service serving Great Barford. However, this is pure speculation on my part  I will be delighted for anybody to give an accurate and authoritative response to this.
TCD813? The reg of a Southdown Motor Services, Northern Counties bodied, Leyland Titan PD3/4 FH39/30F (popularly dubbed 'Queen Mary') from the late 50s.
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Offline TCD813

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2017, 07:29:37 PM »
In addition the the 14:56 from Bedford to Cambridge had St Neots in the destination panel. What it turned short perhaps?  I did notice a long tailback of traffic on the eastbound carriageway of the A421 stretching back from the Black Cat roundabout.

Any comments would be welcome. Thanks

Chris

The destination display, Chris, is owing to the workaround which is used to register the X5 not as one route but a number of shorter routes, all with the same route number, in order to keep it under domestic regulation of drivers' hours rather than European regulation of drivers' hours.
TCD813? The reg of a Southdown Motor Services, Northern Counties bodied, Leyland Titan PD3/4 FH39/30F (popularly dubbed 'Queen Mary') from the late 50s.
There's all 'manor' of stuff on my Twitter A/c.

Offline David Hancock

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #4 on: January 20, 2017, 07:51:36 PM »
If you look at either twitter or the stagecoach East Service updates you will see that the road through both Gt Barford and Roxton Turn are closed on several dates. This might answer your question

Offline chopper

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2017, 09:47:35 AM »
More oddities yesterday.

I caught the 14.22 X5 from St Nwots which was a double decker 19889. On arrival at Bedford it was switched with 54306 which was on the 14:50 Bedford- Cambridge. All passengers changed vehicles and 19889 returned to Cambridge as an X5.

Also odd was a single decker 35220 on the 15:37 Bedford - Kettering. Usually a double decker 35220 was full and standing leaving Bedford.

Offline chopper

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2017, 09:49:02 AM »
More oddities yesterday.

I caught the 14.22 X5 from St Nwots which was a double decker 19889. On arrival at Bedford it was switched with 54306 which was on the 14:50 Bedford- Cambridge. All passengers changed vehicles and 19889 returned to Cambridge as an X5.

Also odd was a single decker 35220 on the 15:37 Bedford - Kettering. Usually a double decker 35220 was full and standing leaving Bedford.



Edit: Moved from SiNothants (TCD813)
« Last Edit: February 09, 2017, 11:12:11 AM by TCD813 »

Offline busman

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2017, 10:56:21 AM »
More oddities yesterday.

I caught the 14.22 X5 from St Nwots which was a double decker 19889. On arrival at Bedford it was switched with 54306 which was on the 14:50 Bedford- Cambridge. All passengers changed vehicles and 19889 returned to Cambridge as an X5.

Also odd was a single decker 35220 on the 15:37 Bedford - Kettering. Usually a double decker 35220 was full and standing leaving Bedford.
Some duties are operated by E400's running shorts between Cambridge & Bedford
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Offline Julia_Hayward

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #8 on: February 09, 2017, 04:00:28 PM »
The usual "shorts" are real shorts - the duty being just Bedford - Cambridge and back, but the E400s have been getting on to other runs at the moment along with the 536xx coaches. Are a few of the 54xxxs off the road?

Offline al_557

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #9 on: February 09, 2017, 06:30:54 PM »
The usual "shorts" are real shorts - the duty being just Bedford - Cambridge and back, but the E400s have been getting on to other runs at the moment along with the 536xx coaches. Are a few of the 54xxxs off the road?
So that's why Darts have been on a few duties on the 1 recently.
The Elite's haven't been very reliable. They seem to have been a problem from day one Whilst the Enviro 400's are probably the best in Bedford's fleet. shame there's only 6 of them

Offline Julia_Hayward

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #10 on: February 09, 2017, 07:28:00 PM »
I've had a number of drivers moaning about the doors on the Elites - are they any worse than the older coaches?

Offline Habbinman

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #11 on: February 09, 2017, 08:09:17 PM »
I've had a number of drivers moaning about the doors on the Elites - are they any worse than the older coaches?
Its to do with the design of the door.....They are Plug Doors ! For the door to work & close correctly, the vehicle MUST be standing level transversely across the front !! The design is for the door to close to, in a flush fit & then to lift slightly to secure itself on the doorpost lugs. However, if the vehicle is leaning into the gutter with the road camber, it won't close properly as it has positioning sensors, which trigger the door to re-open. It does this to prevent the door closing incorrectly & buckling out of shape. Unfortunately, until the door closes correctly, you cannot move the vehicle, as it isolates the gears & holds the brakes on !! The remedy is to get out of the seat & pull the door gently, to fit flush, as it is closing...it will then secure properly !!. Unfortunately, if the drivers are not trained properly on these doors, they won't know how to overcome any problems ?

Offline Habbinman

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #12 on: February 09, 2017, 08:28:26 PM »
Ex Peterborough dart 35104 (AE06WXP) broke down on London road whilst operating the 73.
A driver friend of mine told me that all the 53 reg darts will be withdrawn by the end of the year although he didn't say what would be replacing them
Well, all I can say is that they'll replace the 51-reg MANs first. Most of them are well past their sell-by-date !! In fact, all the ones (of that batch) that went to Manchester have all now been Withdrawn, by them ! Not saying your friend is wrong, but most drivers just repeat what they hear on the "rumour mill" & that, whilst I worked (in a Supervisory Role) for Stagecoach, was usually absolutely miles out !!

Offline SteveHFC

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #13 on: February 09, 2017, 09:18:36 PM »
One of the 51-reg MAN's (22318) was plying it's trade on the 99 this afternoon - was on the 1300 departure from Milton Keynes. The reliability of the coaches on the X5 and 99 seems to have been much better this winter so far as appearances of buses on the 99 have been few and far between.

Offline Julia_Hayward

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #14 on: February 22, 2017, 06:15:42 PM »
A driver on an X5 Elite told me they have six off the road today. As one has just sat down at Midsummer Common with steering problems, I guess it's seven now...

Offline skyLink

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #15 on: February 22, 2017, 06:40:43 PM »
A driver on an X5 Elite told me they have six off the road today. As one has just sat down at Midsummer Common with steering problems, I guess it's seven now...

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Offline al_557

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #16 on: February 22, 2017, 08:33:23 PM »
A driver on an X5 Elite told me they have six off the road today. As one has just sat down at Midsummer Common with steering problems, I guess it's seven now...
These have to be the least reliable coaches ever to be used on the route
« Last Edit: February 22, 2017, 10:20:35 PM by al_557 »

Offline Habbinman

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #17 on: February 24, 2017, 06:15:04 PM »
These have to be the least reliable coaches ever to be used on the route
Maybe, BUT have you ever considered the daily mileage these vehicles are clocking up ?? Some of them are doing upwards of 300 miles on a daily basis. I'm not sure if one or two actually do 3 round trips Cambridge to Oxford per day, BUT that would be about 480 miles total daily !! Just think what the Annual Mileage could be ?? Somewhere around 24,000 miles !!

Offline Julia_Hayward

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #18 on: February 24, 2017, 06:18:58 PM »
But surely coaches should be designed on the assumption they will take a hammering?

Offline Steves

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #19 on: February 24, 2017, 08:52:02 PM »
Is it the sort of work that they do? National Express use Volvos and they are quite reliable although I think NX only bought Scanias for their in house ops.  The NX coaches clock up the miles but they don't operate start stop the way the X5 does.

Offline TCD813

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #20 on: February 24, 2017, 09:36:06 PM »
Is it the sort of work that they do? National Express use Volvos and they are quite reliable although I think NX only bought Scanias for their in house ops.  The NX coaches clock up the miles but they don't operate start stop the way the X5 does.

Well, yes. The X5 speeds for 30-odd miles à la NatEx, then becomes the village bus for the next 20+ miles, where the local paysans board with a cage-full of chickens in the hold (or half-a-dozen Aldi/Lidl/Tesco carrier-bags) and every boarding passenger assumes it's de rigeur to negotiate the best possible bargain fare. (Discount for cash?) And then resumes the NatEx dash mode.
TCD813? The reg of a Southdown Motor Services, Northern Counties bodied, Leyland Titan PD3/4 FH39/30F (popularly dubbed 'Queen Mary') from the late 50s.
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Offline Habbinman

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #21 on: February 24, 2017, 09:37:34 PM »
But surely coaches should be designed on the assumption they will take a hammering?
Not necessarily ! Take Tour Coaches like Shearings...the first & last days of a tour they get fast running & long distances, but whilst on the actual tour the usage is more relaxed..drive here, drive there with a 2-hour stop etc. National Express is more One-stop (per Town/City) with longer inter-urban running at better cruising speeds (motorways/dual carriageways). The X5 is very intensive non-motorway & very stop/start with vehicles working up to 18/20 hours a day.

Unfortunately, manufacturers don't really design them as an (almost round the clock) intensive workhorse to be used by Companies like Stagecoach. They are really designed to cater for Tour/Leisure Market Coach Operators such as Saffords, Robinsons, Richmonds, Dews, Kenzies etc. Its not been unknown for these Companies to keep coaches in tip-top condition for 15-20 years & more!!  Oddly enough, & thinking more about it, Stagecoach are the Only Major Big 5 Bus Group to use coaches on such work, if I'm correct !?

Offline Habbinman

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #22 on: February 24, 2017, 09:44:45 PM »
Is it the sort of work that they do? National Express use Volvos and they are quite reliable although I think NX only bought Scanias for their in house ops.  The NX coaches clock up the miles but they don't operate start stop the way the X5 does.
The various contractors on Nat Exp work can specify either Volvo or Scania for their coaches, mainly with Caetano Levante bodies. Both chassis are accepted by Nat Exp as part of their Contract Standards & Specifications Agreements.

Offline al_557

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #23 on: April 15, 2017, 06:44:36 PM »
Whilst looking through pics on flickr I came across this photo taken by Stan Butler of ex Bedford dart 34431 (KV53EZH) at one of the Barnsley scrap yards.
Is this the first of the batch of 26 to be scrapped? The remaining ones at Bedford are past their best at nearly 14 years old but keep struggling on

https://www.flickr.com/photos/61188429@N06/33222347223/

Offline Habbinman

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #24 on: April 16, 2017, 01:13:41 PM »
Whilst looking through pics on flickr I came across this photo taken by Stan Butler of ex Bedford dart 34431 (KV53EZH) at one of the Barnsley scrap yards.
Is this the first of the batch of 26 to be scrapped? The remaining ones at Bedford are past their best at nearly 14 years old but keep struggling on

https://www.flickr.com/photos/61188429@N06/33222347223/
Before going for scrap, it was recently at Stagecoach West, after it had been transferred there from Bedford, some time ago.

Offline Tony

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #25 on: May 17, 2017, 09:57:49 PM »
seen in Cambridge on May 15 was Bedford Bus branded 19893 operating the 1210 X5 departure towards Oxford, would this have got swapped out at Bedford?
Cheers in advance for any info

Offline Steves

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #26 on: May 22, 2017, 10:56:35 PM »
54312 seemed to have failed at Northampton Street, Cambridge this evening.  I saw it at about 9pm but it probably failed sometime earlier as there was a large wrecker approaching. I did not have time to wait to watch was happened.

Offline katieloulou

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #27 on: June 28, 2017, 07:49:39 PM »
Not sure what was going on in Bedford this morning (28th June), but there were two ALX400 tridents (18419 and 18423) on the 1 together with one of the MANs... Meanwhile one of the 5 E400s, normally on the 1 was seen on the 9!

Offline al_557

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #28 on: June 29, 2017, 02:44:35 PM »
Dart 35106 (AE06WXS) on the 1 instead of an Enviro 400.
Kings Lynn's Enviro 300 27642 (GX10HBU) is parked in the yard at Bedford depot. Is this a transfer in? Can't be here for repaint as that was only done last year

Offline al_557

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Re: Stagecoach in Bedford happenings 2017
« Reply #29 on: July 14, 2017, 06:34:56 PM »
Enviro 400's 19888 and 19892 (AE11FUD/J) escaped the 1 for the 81 and 42 respectively their places on the 1 taken up by Tridents 18057 (AE53TZJ) and one other I forgot to note down. Usually this happens when the ever unreliable elites breakdown and the Enviro's cover on the X5

Kings Lynn's Enviro 300 27642 (GX10HBU) remains dumped in the yard at Bedford depot next to withdrawn darts 34423 (KV53EYZ) and 34479 (PX53DKF). It's been in the same place for 2 weeks now and had its headlight surrounds removed