Saturday, 31 July 2010

Done for today

As i thought! Very enjoyable today. Just finished. Been pretty busy. Some confusion some not bothered, some moaners. Can't please everyone. I wouldn't like to be here monday morning i bet it's going to be hammered. Back in tomorrow when the skyride is on so a slight diversion tomorrow. I never realised how many buses this place had. It's huge. And there are still loads out on the road.

A week away

Just started my week at princess road. It's easy to forget how busy these other depots are compared to ashton. Also i'm just finding my way around to see where everything is. No idea that my first part is because i can't find a copy of the running boards to see what time my bus comes in so i'm stood watching the world go by hoping to see it come in. Will also be nice to drive a newer enviro instead of the 6 and 7 plate ones we have at ashton. One chap from hyde road says the replacement service is very busy but also very easy. No money to take and hardly any stops. I think it's going to be a very enjoyable week.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Back here again

390s again for my sins. Then a trip on the 218 this afternoon. It will be the first one since the change. I believe there is now far too much time on the 217 and 218 and you have to really drag your heels so to speak. This is because of the extra bus on there which gives you just under 3 hours to do the journey instead of 2 1/2 like before. This pic is the bin men in whitfield taking there time holding up my bus.

New arrivals

For the interested. 22092 and 22094 the 54 plate man buses have turned up overnight. Not sure what has left us though.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Wrong side of town.

Out route learning the metrolink replacement service today. Getting some odd looks in this magic bus on this side of town. Looks like long days next week but i don't mind the change. Not sure what we are driving on this service but last time it was man buses. I'm doing the second half of my duty which is glossop and a gee cross i think. Nice simple day today.

Monday, 26 July 2010

Nice drive

Just on the back half of my split now. It's 1 and a half trips on the 389. Finish in gee cross and then back private to depot. This is one of the newer mans buses we have received. It's a nice drive, pretty nippy too. We have this and also 22055 which is also a 53 plate. I would like to see the 06 man buses at our depot from stockport they are a very nice drive. From saturday i'm working from princess road for a week doing metrolink replacement which should be a nice change. It's only upto crumpsall but i don't know where from yet though.

Sunday, 25 July 2010

Long ride

Day off today thanks to the laws of driving a bus making me be off so i thought i would jump on my bike and go for a little ride. Ended up in liverpool city took 4 hours at a steady pace with a few stops to take pics and to have lunch. Nice ride along the trans pennine trail. I'm just on the trans pennine express train to stalybridge. Nice mr conductor man let me on with my staff pass which is good. Most will be there is the odd one who won't let us on for free. On a split tomorrow so up early for the first part then after next week i'm doing something a little different but will tell you about that later in the week.

Friday, 23 July 2010

Stuck inside

At hyde road today on a course. Shame really it's the only day it has not rained and i'm stuck inside. Not much going on down her at the moment. Paint shop looks as busy as ever. Even the new dart we are getting has just been done. Few enviros in the queue 19101, 19165, 19006, and 19001 is just visiting for the day. 17645 just come out too along with 19046. There you go in case anyone was wondering where they were. Back to normal things tomorrow.

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Turning point!

This is the terminus at Old Glossop. There has been talk recently of the
Royal Oak terminus being a little unsuitable as the roads are getting busier
and it is a bit of a task getting the bus around the turn in one go
especially if there are cars parked along side the wall.

This is one option that I heard whispered. The 236/7 could terminate here
like the many moons ago when the 214 (I think)came up here.

Its certainly big enough although the road leading upto here is a bit busy
with parked cars as I saw yesterday doing the 390s. I managed to do all 8
trips without self harming and made it in today too. Nothing special today,
2 on a 216 which was very quiet, and then a trip to Gee Cross International
on a 389. Pretty odd though, I don't do a 389 for months now I have them for
3 days in a row all at different times of the day. Never mind.

Noticed the other day too when the 217/8 goes to Shudehill on Monday it is
also reverting back to the old route down Old Mill Street and over Great
Ancoats street. Shame that, we were just starting to see post office staff
using it to Clayton and the likes.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

How varied!

Two pictures that sum the day up. Firstly a little incident with my windscreen. Can't say how or when but wasn't pretty and now i'm sat at glossop hospital bored after one trip of the local bus for local people. Not done these for a while luckily. Suppose it's a nice break away from the horrors of the new road but it's not my cup of tea. Finish for 230 though which is good. Get to rid home in the rain lovely.

Monday, 19 July 2010

On the way home

Very uneventful very hot very stuffy day today. Was stuck on the b10 1 till 4 doing taxis with the heating stuck on after coming out of the gym! Not the best day for it. Taxis are good for gossip. Heard today we have won the tender for the centreline service or whatever it's called now. I believe it's going to be run from Hyde road . I thought first had just got new buses for it too. **update, i cannot find anything to confirm this on the net so it is just hearsay upto now**  Just getting off a 409 they seem to run ok in the evening but read a comment about poor service first thing in the morning which isn't good when people are trying to get to work and there are buses missing. Back in at 6 tomorrow with the god awful 390s for the second part. This picture is the old bank at mumps which has been left like this for a while now but i believe someone has started work on it. Random yes but i like the building lol.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Off to work

I'm trying not to use the car for the month. It's going ok upto now. Just hitched a lift to the depot on a dead bus after getting the 409. On a late today which has glossops all evening as usual for a sunday night. Just noticed we have the group dayrider offer on again for the school holidays. 5 quid for a group and 4 quid for a plus one. Am not advertising it but we all say it's a great price. Knocks spots off other operators prices.

Saturday, 17 July 2010

Long day

Saturday duties are normally longer for some reason. Today is no exception. Just on my first trip and i notice the royal oak has had a huge decking area stuck on the front of it. An sure it's nice when the suns out. Although it's hardly stopped raining this week. Glossop and Gee cross until 1230ish then a couple of trips on the 216s. Nice to read that we won public transport operator of the year at the awards on thursday so we must be doing something right somewhere. Well done us.

Thursday, 15 July 2010

Looks familiar

This bus has stagecoach seats inside it. Don't think it was a manchester bus. Just on a 330 about to head to ashton and home. Been a boring drag today. Got pretty wet at 4am this morning cycling to work too. By the looks of it i'll be getting wet on the way home too lol.

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

The odd couple

As most will know the b10 is normally out on taxi duties around ashton. At the moment it's route learning new drivers. It's soon to be gone though. The replacement is the stagecoach lancs dart which i posted the other day. Just started work. 5am a little early but i'm finished by 1230 which is nice.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Middle of nowhere.

This is henry square. A very busy part of the town and looks great following on going regeneration. I'm not sure what the old building used to be but i liked it. The new building are all very busy. The courts the walk in centre and a few other buildings containing offices. What i can't undertand is why we have not sent a bus service around here? I get lots of people asking where the walk in centre and the court buildings are but never know there was a road going around here that leads on to cavendish street. I think a service around here would be helpful and easier than using katherine street as that sometimes gets clogged up with buses.

Delayed 216s

Ok Remember that these roadworks are both ways and add so much time to service in peak times.
This first picture is the Junction of Great Ancoats Street and Old Mill Street. In the evening traffic is backed up to Oldham Road because of this bottle nect. You normally get through these roadworks when you are supposed to be leaving Manchester City Stadium

Just afer you turn onto Every street you are hit with these lights. This too is backed up to Great Anoacts street at peak times and normally costs another 3-4 minutes. By now the bus should probably be at Edge Lane.

Lets not forget why we are driving up and down this road.. This is the bus stop at the botom of  North road.
On some mornings there can be 20-25 people at both these bus stops. On a Monday morning this can add considerable time due to it being the main day for megariders being issued. We would never moan about having a busy bus but this does add time to the journey

This is the next set of roadworks. 3 minutes are lost here if you missed the lights. This is a long stretch and is at the Junction of Canberra Street and Ashton New Road. By now the bus Should be in Droylsden.
 Further up the road is the roadwarks outside Aldi. Currently no lights, However!! They tend to put some on and narrow it now and again depending on what they are doing that day. Without the lights Speed is reduced to approx 15-20 due to the width reduction.

These Three show the farce that is the junstion with Edge Lane. Pic 2 shows a waggon getting stuck on the right turn which is the middle section of the chicane. Doesnt help with cars parking on the corner slowing everyone down. Last weekend 4 way lights were put up here causing delays of up to 5 minutes. When you come through here the bus should prob be passing Snipe Retail.
 These two are more narrowed roads which have both seen lights on in the past few weeks. These are outside the Buxton and the Jolly Carter Pubs.

Crazy Woman time!! Ok for the time being lets imagine the car parked in the middle of the Droylsden main bus stop is a bus. The second you pull up people cannot wait to get round you and cut you up. I have had to be over generous with the brakes on a few occasions here because of cars being in the right turn lane and cutting in front. This is also one of the busiest stops on the route. You can lose a good 5 minutes unloading and loading passengers here. Then you have to battle to get out of the stop and through the lights without getting flashed by that camera. We have had many drivers given tickets here because of that camera. Mainly at very low speed. This is because as the bus sets off you get to a point of no return. Either you slam on or try to power out of it before it goes red. Its a tough call here and you have to be very cautious. None of our people ever deliberatly go through on red but because the bus has just set off you are still going through after is changes at low speed.
Ok!! Crazy woman didnt like me taking a picture of her car sitting somewhere it shouldnt.
As i was passing Ryecroft the car came along side very closly and this mad lady asked me why i took a picture of her car. I giggled to myself and carried on riding. She carried on shouting abuse at me along side me so i giggled a little more at her and i stopped. She decided that shouting was the limit today and drove off.

So there you go thats the 216 problem areas. Lets not forget Snipe retail on a Weekend when there are queues to get in or the large amount of people that use the service. All in all though its a great well run frequent bus service that works well. Little miss or Mr Moany arse in the Tameside advertiser is welcome to get the 219 instead. but until the bus grows wings or the tram is finished, this is how it is.

Top of the the world

Good ride that. Got some intesting pictures on ashton new road including one of a car which had parked in a busy bus stop which in turn chased after me will explain more when i get home. I just come up to the pike. It's a bit windy and there is only me here today. I won't bore you with scenery shots as this new phone is good but not suitable for big pictures like that. Plus the ashton under lyne does a good enough job of posting stuff like that. Just having a little rest now before heading over to oldham. Wasn't going to do too much today but this bike is so easy and so addictive thought i'd climb a hill.

Whats this

Not seen this in the highway code. Any ideas?

Not so bad!

Day off today so i've come to try the bike out. Just got into piccadilly in 20 minutes.which beats to old one. Thought i'd take the trip back to highlight the perils on the 216 route. At the moment they are running on time with 3 buses on the stand at piccadilly. Will also update whats happening with the metrolink works whilst i am out too.

Play time

On a late last night pretty uneventful really. Finished just after midnight. I'm off today luckily because i'm going to take the new bike for a ride. Not sure where yet but will get a feel for it at least. I'm back in at 5am tomorrow and the same for thursday and friday.

Sunday, 11 July 2010

All quiet

Just in piccadilly at the moment. It's quiet out. A few people knocking about either going to work or going home after there night out. Got 20 minutes here and i'm only on my first trip. Got the usual people giving me daggers because i won't load up yet but not to worry. Finish at 2 and on a late tomorrow so nice 24 hours off. New bike comes tomorrow, had to swap it because of delivery issues on the one i ordered but this one is just as good. Can't wait.

A little lost

This has turned up at ashton overnight. It's come from lancs don't know if it's here to stay or here on loan. Bit far from home though.

Saturday, 10 July 2010

Change of subject time? Almost.

This is the 409 stand in ashton. It looks like this most of the day before 3 or 4 buses come in at once. Now i will admit we have, at certain times though the day, problems with the new road and a few people at work have been talking about the letter that was written in to the tameside advertisor. I think it's safe to say we all feel disappointed with the narrow mindedness of this letter and disagree with what has been said. Back to the 409s. My phone is almost dead because of the amount of emails today since it was mentioned that speedwell was running an ashton- oldham service lol. It's a brilliant idea almost! First will go all out to stop speedwell doing anything on this route. The other problems is, the lack of distance. The 409 makes a lot of it's money taking people through oldham and on to either ashton or rochdale. The speedwell service will certainly be missing a trick if it doesn't do the full length. Will have to wait and see i suppose.

Thursday, 8 July 2010

What a shed

Just got on 64 in oldham. Am trying to get to elk mill without using my car but nothing goes there from oldham? How pathetic is that. No wonder there are huge queues trying to get in there every weekend. We do a huge trade to crown point and snipe on the 347 and 216. Someone has missed a trick in oldham. Anyway am off today and need to rest the pins so no bike ride today just rest and a bit of shopping for me. In at 4am tomorrow though on staff taxis. This bus is one of oldham depots finest volvos sounds great. Shame about the driver who looks 10 and drives like lewis hamilton. Just noticed the 402 floating around royton. Is this the same route as the O4 little gem service?

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Metrolink Underpass

This is the new entrance to the underpass that runs underneath Great Ancoats
Street in Manchester. The tram runs through here and comes out on the other
side and runs parallel to Pollard Street. Its all very much taking shape now
up the new road. Lots of tram tracks on the road now causing more and more
chaos everyday but im told it will be worth it in the end. On a 9 - 5 today
7s and a couple of trips on the 330 so no tram tracks for me lol. Off
tomorrow too so might head out on my bike somewhere as the weather is
looking pretty ok. However I get the impression summer has been and left us.

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Out to lunch

Trainees are at lunch at the moment. Seemed to be loads in driving school at the moment. Not a bad thing i think. Just waiting for the taxi to do my 3 216s which is the back half of my split. First half was 2 trips on a 347 which was painfully boring. Hoping for a nice simple afternoon without hassle. Bike been delayed until the 16th so am a little annoyed at that but nothing i can do.

Sunday, 4 July 2010

Mine thank you!

Catch of the day last night on the 216s. This county card was looking a bit odd so i asked for a closer look. A quick snatch and i noticed it ran out in APRIL! The punter swiftly got off after i took it off her. Good result coz these things arn't cheap. In today too nice and easy trip to glossop twice followed by a round trip on a 231. Not done a sunday for a while so hoping for a nice peacefull drive today. Bike has been delayed, it should have been with the supplies friday but not turned up yet so will be making a few angry calls on monday. Bit gutted but hoping this week sometime still. Had a look at 19081 this morning. I know a couple of people commented on the state of the interior. I have checked and it is due to be done this week however due to the comments made it will be done tomorrow morning. So should be sparkling again soon. Very rare they get that bad so shouldn't see too many like that.

Friday, 2 July 2010

Bus type things

Bit of an update on the bus movements at ashton if you are interested. At the moment 19120 is the newest enviro we can have as we don't have adblu. We are getting it very soon along with newer enviros from somewhere so i am told. Also we are getting the newer man buses from stockport and not before time. Not sure when! I am guessing for the 25th july rewrite. Also got the final details for the mossley buses. We are still going to mossley. We are terminating at shudehill and we are putting just one extra bus on to increase the journey times of the ones already on there. Also get 15 standing time at shudehill so they should all run bang on time with no problems honest!

All gone

This is the ex row of shops and pub at the junction of crickets lane and penny meadow in ashton. Always an eyesore really although i didn't think they warrented pulling down. I'm not sure if it's part of a bigger plan as there are some works going on further down near the station. Will see in time i'm sure. Just off to work on a split duty today which means a trip to the gym inbetween shame i have 216 on the back half as they ain't the nicest thing to do on a friday afternoon. Found out the 217 218 details yesterday too. They are covering mossley still just not serving piccadilly. Instead using shude hill, church street, lever street and onwards up oldham road. Also i believe there are extra buses going on there although i'm not sure how many. Someone mentioned doubling to make it a 30 minute service on both routes. Hardly any need in my opinion!