Friday, 23 December 2011

Off out.

I just want to start by saying I appreciate the comment of anon on a previous post. It's the kind of comment that makes me want to keep blogging. He is clearly well upto date with movements within management and cares about the company he works for. And i agree! . I must apologise if i sounded a little biased about the fare increase. Lets not forget i wouldn't be able to comment in a negative way or would want to if it was stagecoach. So lets not also forget that first do run very quality services. Including the one i am on now. I'm on the last 83 to Manchester which is the 2325 from oldham. Always turns up and it's free. Lucky me. I can sit here chuckling away at people paying. Anyway. Nice to see some great constructive comments on something i do to pass some time. I'm off now until the 28th so Happy Christmas and see you all soon. X

Friday, 16 December 2011

New cleaning routine

This is the new way we are cleaning the tops of the buses. Just so they look nice from the flats above the bus station.

Thursday, 15 December 2011


This Huddersfield bus was in oldham today on the 184. Thought it different as they normally run double deckers. Bad news though for First bus passengers. fares are on the rise from January the 2nd. Day tickets will be 4.50 monthly will be 59 quid. The 1.90, 2.50 and 3.10 fares will all increase by a massive 30p each. There is more increases but i cannot remember them at the moment. The company is blaming new buses and new ticket machines which are being introduced next year. My opinion is that these rises are a huge insult to the passengers and cannot be justified.

Monday, 12 December 2011

Oh dear

Just on a first bus dart running on the 64 and notice this sign on the emergency exit at the back of the bus. Someone should use a spell checker or pay more attention to thier work.

Off out

Just heading off out for the day. Luckily the first bus of the day is this very nice old volvo. Old but the engine still sounds as if it just come out of the factory. This is on the 425 to oldham. On the 64 after this. There is method in the madness but i won't bore you with the details. Long weekend off so no work until Wednesday.

Wednesday, 7 December 2011


I'm just on a 216 heading to Piccadilly. We were making good progress until we passed Ryecroft hall then all of a sudden long slow moving traffic. I can see 5 buses in the traffic which is not very good and i blame Tameside council. I think there organisation along with help from the pte or whatever they want to call themselves is absolutly disgusting. I feel so sorry for the residents and people who have to use public transport along this route. This service was brilliant before use stupid tram works started and all we hear now is how bad things have become. There is nothing coming the other way but yet we are still sat at temporary lights surrounded by workers who are doing very little. With a bit of luck i might get to piccadilly by lunchtime!

The future?

This is something different, Noticed this 219 yesterday with a bit of sparkle on the advert that is on the side. Its got little sparkly leds built into it which is somehow wired into the bus electrics. The advert is for the Trafford centre. I only saw it in the daytime but i bet it looks better at night.
Had a little browse at the service changes which are taking place in January yesterday. Some interesting ones such as 216s being extended to Stamford Park! Will wait till i get the full list before going into it.Off into Piccadilly today again on whats looking like a really poor weather day :(

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Something different.

This East midlands dart called into Piccadilly today after a day at the museum of transport. Certainly made a few people turn as it passed through. Had an entertaining day today. Ended up watching a march head along Wilmslow road for a few hours. It moved very slowly and caused a bit of disruption but nothing to bad.

Bit miserable

Lucky me. Stood in Piccadilly on this horrid wet Sunday. Not much going on yet. Plenty of shoppers about though. Seems nothing keeps them in. Here till 6 so well wrapped up. Does make a nice change though being in town.

Friday, 2 December 2011


I've not been down to Hyde road for a few weeks and was amazed to see this monster in the back car part. It's the new mast for our radio system which we are getting in the new year. Should hopefully make contacting the buses a little easier. It's hard to show how big this thing really is but it does cause a creek in the neck looking up at it.

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Out with the old

Called into the depot at Ashton this morning and found these old darts waiting to be sent to either bus heaven or anywhere that wants to buy them. They are 33084, 33091 and 34054. Not sure where or when they are going but they won't be service again around these parts. Been in the bus station all day which was getting a bit boring with the kids being off . Well that was until everyone decided to go shopping in Manchester. Good day today in all. Nothing was affected by the tfgm striking as far as i'm concerned. On a late tomorrow which is a nice change. Feels like months since i last did a late shift.

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Nearly That Time

Doing my company boy bit today. No work today so i thought i would share the details of the Christmas services. I'm off on most the days luckily. Back in Ashton tomorrow where hopefully it's a lot better than it wa last week.

Last week we saw the traffic lights on Stockport Road stuck on Red so nothing moved for a while. until someone with a bit of sense turned them off ;) and then the traffic cleared.
And then Friday saw a broken down waggon at the Gunn inn. So every bus from Glossop was very late. Not an ideal day but it kept me busy.

Monday, 21 November 2011

Etihad Tram Stop

Here is a look at the new metrolink station at the Etihad stadium. I was interested to see how they were going to cope with ticketless passengers and it seems a very similar situation to Old Trafford tram stop on match days with passengers having to pass through ticket booths rather than the usual pay machines you get at most stations.
Seems well thought out although to get an Ashton bound tram you must cross the line. Can see that being fun when thousands of people come out at once.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

New arrival.

Not much going on at Ashton this week apart from this next hybrid turning up. It's one of dukinfields new buses and looks very smart indeed. It's the first one with a few more to follow in January i'm told.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

New buses

Here is one of the hybrids that First manchester have got. I do like the new silver colour. I'm not sure when they are out in service or what routes they are going on. I'm sure the weekly ticket will increase again to pay for them.

Monday, 31 October 2011


Just noticed this not so old bus on the 389 service. It's an oldham depot bus which comes off Maple school and then does a few trips on here. Unusual to see. The other picture is an optare which wouldn't start and ended up getting dragged to depot by this huge tow truck.

Saturday, 29 October 2011


Something just doesn't look right with this 216 in Piccadilly yesterday. Not put my finger on it but something seems a little different. Been a crazy couple of days. The works at droylsden are causing us all sorts of issues for the 216s and 7s. Today was made worse because city were playing a home game so the traffic was worse than ever with some buses taking over an hour to get from Piccadilly to Ashton. I really wished they would hurry up with this stupid tram rubbish. Back Monday in Ashton again for more fun and games.

Monday, 24 October 2011

Monday blues

Just arrived at Chorlton bus station. It's one of our earliest starts and not exactly my favorite. Not enough going on for me and a long way from home. Luckily we can swap our duties just like drivers can but didn't get the chance to on Friday. Not to worry off to owens park later although with it being half term i doubt the excitement will increase. The picture is the police station at chorlton which has now been boarded up. The toilets have also been shut down too so nothing here now apart from a few bus stops.monday morning moans over with. On with the job in hand.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

All Gone

If you saw the smoke then this is whats left of a building that was well alight on Friday evening. I noticed the smoke from the other side of Manchester, and Oldham road was still closed in one direction this morning. I believe First buses are using Rochdale road for the Oldham buses.

Not again!

Had a nice break from work and back now to find road works have returned onto Great Ancoats street. Well, more like cones have returned. This little lot are doing nothing at all apart from jamming the road up at peak times. The actual works are just before you reach this section so i don't see the point of these. Today i'm in Piccadilly on the early and it's pretty quiet at the moment but as with all derby days i'm sure it will be a busy day.

Thursday, 13 October 2011


This was the result of an impact with a car hitting this bus at about 30 mph. It will take a lot to get it fixed but it shows how tough these buses are when they are hit. Am off for a couple of weeks so not many posts and the weather means no bike rides either sadly. I'm back next friday. Not sure how this picture will look, it was sent by a friend at Ashton.

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Ashton Metrolink

This is the new Metrolink station at Ashton. Obviously a long way to go but the foundations have been laid and I'm sure it will start rising from the ground very soon. The track laying is Ashton is cracking on too. Shame it isn't so quick in Droylsden.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011


This dart on a school service run by M travel comes into the bus station every day. Sadly someone didn't check the spelling of it's destination lol. In ashton again today although it's going cooler now so the fleece will be out tomorrow i think.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Another Gem

This is another Little Gem leaflet from the late 80s. This time the 168. Got loads of these timetables from a friend at work. Still find it so interesting to see what was running then and how things are now.Don't want to overdo it though and bore everyone with them. But since not much happening where i have been thought i would post a few more.
Add caption

These have been supplied by Richard Grenfell who is always interested in any pictures you may have, new or old. He can be emailed directly at

Thursday, 29 September 2011

Worst bus

Big thanks to the driver of this 135 bendy bus who thought it would be fun to stop on the 216 stand. I did mention that he would probably have plenty to moan about if we parked two 216s on thier stand. He mumbled something and then moved it.

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Nice ride

was on the 192s in piccadilly today and so was this trident. Great to drive these buses and the bench seats are nicer too for the punters. Well i think so anyway. Was quiet in town today. On a couple of late duties now so i get a nice lie in tomorrow.

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Something unusual

Just noticed this 216 come into ashton. The destination blinds appear to be all in capital letters. It does stick out more and i think it looks better although i have not seen any other bus with the same style. Working in the bus station today. I'm expecting a tough day as Manchester city are playing everton at home.

Friday, 23 September 2011

Taking the trash out.

This fire damaged Trident has been in the back of Hyde Road for a good few
years now. I took this as PVS were taking it away yesterday.
I'm off today so catching up on a few things.
Also managed to scan more old Little Gem leaflets so might upload some of
them this weekend if I get chance.
Looking like a good day today so tempted to get the bike out later.
Last night was so busy at Owens park. Freshers week is totally manic. It was
more like a Manchester derby the way they tried boarding the buses at 1030.
Not too enjoyable at all.

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Somewhere different

Today is something very different. I'm at the freshers event at owens park in fallowfield. This is our stall where we are selling uniriders to the students and telling the new people what buses we would like them to catch. Very different to my normal day indeed.

Saturday, 17 September 2011

The vision

This is the vision that was the Metrolink. It's interesting to see the design of the tram on the leaflet compared with how it actually turned out.
This next leaflet is the introduction of the 757 Airport shuttle from Piccadilly. I remember this very well from my youth, as  i would often jump on this bus whilst out on my bus rides to get to the airport quicker.The seats were like the normal express seats downstairs but blue and had a larger luggage area.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Going cold

Today has changed a little to the plan. I was supposed to be in a training session but that was cancelled. Instead i'm doing a survey on the 219 service at grey mare lane. It basically tells us if the buses are on time and how many are travelling. Its not the nicest part of the job especilly since it's a cold wet day but it has to be done now and again.

More Gems

This one is another Little Gem leaflet but this time its the A1.

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Another one

This leaflet is obviousley the information for the Little Gem service when it started up in Ashton.
These buses arrived in Greater Manchester in the late 80s and promoted a frequent service connecting estates with town centres and went where the bigger buses had never been before.
I remember the O service around Oldham but this one is the A2 and A3 services which ran around the Tameside area. Don't remember seeing any MCW minibuses like the one on the picture. I think they had Ivecos at Tameside depot.