During the current restrictions on non-essential journeys we will raid our archives and publish a series of images from the past on an occasional basis. Today its 20 years ago - a selection of images from the year 2000.
First up is a look at a Stagecoach driver training vehicle back in the year 2000. The company was buying up Wadham Stringer vehicles from the MOD and in use with Stagecoach Viscount in Peterborough is 51 (D443GAV). It would later be replaced by a Leyland Lynx, which in turn were replaced by Volvo B10M coaches. Currently the Volvo B10Ms are being replaced by Enviro 200s.
Secondly, for today, we feature a Volvo B10M with Plaxton Premiere bodywork which carries National Express livery. It was also part of the Stagecoach Viscount fleet as its 456 (R456FCE). At the time Stagecoach Viscount was going through a shortage of serviceable vehicles and the National Express coach was commandeered to work a local Peterborough service. We doubt such use of National Express-branded coaches would be tolerated today. 456 subsequently went on to be part of the Megabus fleet and then part of the Rail Replacement fleet at Stagecoach East Midlands before moving to Stagecoach West as a training vehicle.
The company has temporary closed its depots at Pocklington, Elloughton, Withernsea and Bridlington will all remaining services now being operated from Hull and Scarborough depots.
Go North East
Like East Yorkshire a number of depots will temporarily be closed here and we understand the impact here is severe with almost two thirds of the fleet being mothballed. From the details we have seen that means that 422 vehicles from an operational fleet of 666 have been parked up and delicenced.
Stagecoach UK Bus
We do not intend to list delicenced and mothballed vehicles in Fleet Ramblings for the individual operating companies but will highlight then, where we have details, on the individual allocation documents as they are updated.
Stagecoach South West
Dart SLF 34610 and MAN/Enviro 300 24146, which had been in all-over white livery, have now been finished in the ‘Stagecoach Local’ scheme.
On loan from Plymouth to Exeter for Rail Replacement services are Enviro 400MMCs 10488/93/96/97.
Stagecoach South Wales
Scania/Enviro 300s 28729 and 28731 along with Optare Solo 47629, which had been in temporary use at Brecon Outstation have now been transferred to Cwmbran following the re-entry into service of Volvo B8RLRE/MCVs 21359/61 and Optare Solo 48041.
Dart SLF 34768 from Blackwood has been withdrawn after sustaining fire damage whilst Volvo B10M 52401 has been sold.
Reserve Fleet vehicles now on the main allocation at Cwmbran are Scania/Enviro 400 15754, Trident 18072 and Optare Solo 47671, which vehicles moving from Cwmbran to Reserve are Scania/Enviro 300s 28725/26/30/34, Scania/Enviro 400 15965 and Optare Solo 47525.
Optare Solo SR 47855 has transferred from the Reserve Fleet to Aberdare displacing 47534 for transfer to the Reserve Fleet.
The company has taken half of its main fleet and all of its contract fleet out of service and delicenced them. The only operational buses now are Volvo B9TLs 150/52/53/54/56/58 and Volvo B5TL 159 along with Volvo B7RLEs 146/47/48/49/55 and Volvo B8RLE 164.
We understand that several members of the ‘Heritage’ fleet also remain licenced.
Stagecoach East Midlands
A further Enviro 200 transferred from Grimsby to Skegness is 37188, whilst additional Enviro 400s received at Skegness from Hull are 19689/90/91.
Former Stagecoach North East Enviro 400 19194 has now received InterConnect livery and entered service at Skegness on March 18th. It replaced Volvo B7TL 16906 which was taken out of service when it returned to the depot the previous evening.
The last day of use of the Volvo B7TL/East Lancs Vykings here before they were parked up was 25th March when 16904/07/10/123/15 were used for part of the day. 16913 was the last one in service working the 12:00 service 56 from Skegness to Lincoln and the 16:00 return when after arrival back in Skegness it was replaced by Enviro 400 19689. 19689 worked the 16:00 from Skegness to Lincoln but then was declared a failure and 19201 from the Lincoln allocation was used for the return journey to Skegness.
‘Stagecoach Local’ livery is now sported by Enviro 200 36712, Enviro 300 27634 and Enviro 400 19317.
Stagecoach South West
A further recipient of all-over white livery here is MAN/Enviro 300 24144, whilst Scania/Enviro 400 15435, which was all-over white has now been finished in the ‘Stagecoach Local’ livery
Enviro 400MMC 10866 which was involved in a road traffic collision has been towed away from Peterborough depot, believed to be to an external contractor for repairs.
A further Busway Scania/Enviro 400 to be painted into all-over Ocean Green livery is 15219 whilst further recipients of the new Busway branding on their Ocean Green livery are Enviro 400XLB 13911 and MCV eVoRa-bodied Volvo B8RLEs 21363/64.
We have received reports that the first vehicle in this fleet to receive the new ‘Stagecoach Local’ livery is Enviro 300 27705.
Stagecoach North Scotland (Highlands)
At Inverness, from Stagecoach West Scotland, is Volvo B13R 54133 which also now carries the ‘Stagecoach Distance’ Amber livery.
Stagecoach West Scotland
Now repainted here into the Amber ‘Stagecoach Distance’ livery are Volvo B13Rs 54131 and 54132.
The plan to delicense Enviro 200 36766 has not happened and it remains available for service.
Stagecoach Cumbria & North Lancashire
Seven Mercedes-Benz 513CDI/Mellor minibuses are on short term loan here for use on the Sellafield contract until the new Mercedes-Benz Sprinters arrive. They have been allocated fleet numbers 80044 - 80050.
80044 DG63 MYH
80045 DG63 MXF
80046 DG63 NCD
80047 DG63 NEU
80048 DG63 MXH
80049 DG63 LCW
80050 DG63 LCV
Registrations for the new Mercedes-Benz Sprinters due here have changed slightly.
44038 RX20 PZU
44039 WX20 SWK
44040 WX20 SWN
44041 WX20 SWJ
44042 WX20 SVW
44043 WX20 SVY
44044 WX20 SWF
44045 WX20 SVZ
44046 WX20 SWO
44047 awaiting confirmation
44048 WX20 SVU
44049 WX20 SVV
44050 WX20 SVS
44051 WX20 SVT
44052 WX20 SWU
44053 WX20 SWV
In another first for this fleet and we understand across all Stagecoach UK Bus operating companies, its paint shop staff have been busy applying the ‘Stagecoach Local’ livery to an Optare Solo. The recipient is 47617 from West Cumbria depot.
The company is planning to mothball 40% of its fleet of 738 licenced buses with 319 vehicles expected to be parked up by tomorrow.
The company has also confirmed that three of its new Enviro 400MMC vehicles were completed and despatched from ADL’s Falkirk site before the company closed down its bus and coach manufacturing operations earlier this week.
We understand that the Corby outstation may be temporarily closed with operations in the town being transferred to Kettering depot. There has been a suggestion that this could free up valuable space to part up mothballed vehicles. We wonder if a similar fate could happen to the Stratford outstation with operations and buses being moved to Leamington on a temporary basis.
We understand that at least four new Smart Hybrid Enviro 400MMCs are being stored at Stagecoach Cumbria & North Lancashire’s Carlisle depot.
You can access the latest news page from Malcolm and his team of correspondents here: www.oxford-chiltern-bus-page.co.uk/Weekly%20nr%2097%20270320.html
Included this week are:
Further major changes to services throughout our area due to COVID-19 - details
COVID-19 other changes of interest
Oxford in the last day of full bus services by Richard Sharman
Martin Dowling takes us for a break to Luxembourg
Luxembourg offer Free Public Transport to everyone
Up in the Highlands with Nick Ross
North of the Border from Gordon Scott
…..plus all the local news and some pictures of other operators.Don’t forget that you can check out the Oxford & Chilterns Bus Page at any time by visiting: www.oxford-chiltern-bus-page.co.ukbus-page.co.uk
The scale of the downturn in bus travel becomes really evident when the following list of vehicles that have been delicenced from last Monday (23rd March 2020) is checked. These are indeed challenging times. However, things are likely to get worse and we understand that these may not ultimately be the only vehicles to be delicenced.
Hull (Vintage Fleet)
Leyland Titan: 202
AEC Regent: 644
Hill (East Yorkshire Coaches)
Volvo B9R: 77, 89, 90
Mercedes Tourismo: 95
Volvo B7TL: 200
Hull (National Express)
Volvo B9R: 84-87
Hull (Local Bus)
Volvo B7TL: 672, 681-88, 696-99, 700/03/05/07/08/09/13
Volvo B9TL: 715, 717-21, 724-27
Scania L94: 5226/31/32
Volvo B7RLE: 342-48, 363-72
Enviro 300: 271-75
Enviro 200: 355/57, 375/77
Volvo B7TL: 679/80/89, 702/04
Volvo B7TL (Open Top): 896
Volvo B7TL: 711
Volvo B9TL: 739-42
Volvo B7TL (Open Top): 889-95
Volvo B7RLE: 361/62, 382-85
Enviro 200: 353/56/59/60/73/74/76
Volvo B9TL: 744/45/55/72/73/74
Stagecoach East Midlands
We understand that several Enviro 200s are due/have transferred from Grimsby to Skegness. Our understanding is that 37202/04/09 are vehicles earmarked for transfer. Also expected at Skegness are Enviro 400s 19684/86/87/88/92. All these vehicles are fitted with driver protection screens which most of the Skegness domestic allocation is not.
Another vehicle at Banbury being delicenced is Enviro 200 36765.
Stagecoach South West
Scania/Enviro 400 15435, MAN/Enviro 300 24146 and Dart SLF 34610 remain in all-over white livery here.
Further Volvo B7RLE ‘Busway’ saloons to lose their ‘Greener Smarter Travel’ livery for all-over Ocean Green livery are 21222 and 21227.
Alexander Dennis Limited
The company has announced this morning that it has shut down its manufacturing operations. It is, however, still supporting operators through its After Market and Service operations.
Given the ever-changing situation at the moment, Malcolm published an interim news update on March 24th.
You can read it by heading over to the Oxford & Chilterns Bus Page at any time by visiting www.oxford-chiltern-bus-page.co.uk and clicking on the index to the left of the page
Challenging and unprecedented times
Whilst we generally focus on information and events covering the Stagecoach (and EYMS/Go North East fleets) we send our thoughts to all bus and coach operators which find themselves in exceptional and uncharted times.
We have seen the Government announce this morning that will take control of rail franchises back, operating them under a management contract. There is no doubt that all rail franchise operators will see their operations move to management contracts within days in a scheme that is initially set to last for six months, unless subject to early termination.
This will effectively put the most of the UK’s rail system back under Government control - albeit temporary. We are not aware how, or if, Open Access operators will get any protection against reducing passenger numbers.
But as yet it would seem that bus and coach operators are still on their own and are having to face up with the reduction in passengers resulting in the introduction of special reduced frequency timetables. Harder hit are those operators whose workload is centred around schools/colleges services and tours and excursions. We hope that they can survive but we know some will not.
(Head over to our blog page for details of a trading statement from Stagecoach and the Government’s announcement on rail franchises).
Stagecoach UK Bus
Most operating companies have started to reduce timetables from today, with those that have not due to follow from next Monday.
For many timetables are being based on a basic Sunday service with additional early morning services.
Planning teams at Stagecoach (and at most bus companies) have been working around the clock to both maintain services whilst also drawing up the new timetables and drivers rosters. They deserve a vote of thanks for their hard work behind the scenes as do all bus and coach company staff.
At Stagecoach we understand that all recruitment was cancelled last week with just existing trainees continuing their training.
We also understand that given the upcoming reduction in Peak Vehicle Requirement, Stagecoach has asked all operating companies to identify vehicles that can be taken out of use, parked up and delicenced.
We suspect that work on vehicles under long term repairs will in many cases be halted.
Whilst we don’t have details of vehicles that will be parked up we understand that at Stagecoach Oxfordshire’s Banbury depot the required allocation will drop from 25 to 17 with both Dart SLFs 34467/72 and both Optare Solos 47735/36 amongst the buses that will be side lined, although 47736 has been away for engine replacement for some time now. There is also the possibility of Enviro 400 10067 returning to Oxford.
Repaints here into the new ‘Stagecoach Local’ livery are Enviro 200MMCs 37409/11.
This week on the Oxford & Chilterns Bus Page
You can access this week’s news page through this link OCBP Weekly Briefing nr. 96 - March 20th
Another interesting weekly update from Malcolm and his contributors includes:
Major changes to services throughout our area due to COVID-19 - details
Postponement of the upcoming X50 High Wycombe-Heathrow service
Gavin Francis visits Turnpike Lane and Finsbury Park on February 13th
A new book by Paul Lacey on Thames Valley
Gary Seamarks publishes a new book on Showbus past
North of the Border from Gordon Scott
Arriva - details of the new Tourismo coaches for the Green Line 720
…..plus all the local news and some pictures of other operators. Don’t forget that you can check out the Oxford & Chilterns Bus Page at any time by visiting www.oxford-chiltern-bus-page.co.u
Stagecoach Cumbria & North Lancashire
The company has confirmed that it has taken the decision to cancel the planned Open Day scheduled to be held at Carlisle depot on May 23rd. The plan is to stage the event at Carlisle depot in 2021. The company thanks everyone who had expressed an interest in supporting this year’s event.
Details of the vehicles due to be cascaded here for the new Sellafield contract have now emerged. From Stagecoach East Scotland will come 11.8m Enviro 200MMCs 26001-05 and also Optare Versas 25265/66/67. More interesting is the plan to cascade Enviro 400H Hybrids 12206-13 here from Stagecoach Manchester. We understand three more double decks are required for the Sellafield contract and until all the Mercedes-Benz Sprinters have been delivered a number of Mercedes-Benz/Mellor minibuses will be on hire.
Also due here from Stagecoach Manchester, but for normal fleet use, are Enviro 200s 36416/17/19/22.
Enviro 200 37096 is a recipient of the new ‘Stagecoach Local’ livery whilst Optare Solo 47014 has received a new Lakes Connection ‘Solo’ livery
We have been advised that given the current unprecedented situation facing bus operators the plan to transfer Dart SLFs 34562 and 35190 to Stagecoach West will not now take place and upon withdrawal from service the two buses will be for disposal here.
Stagecoach East Scotland
The five dealer stock 11.8m Enviro 200MMCs which were built and registered at the end of last year are expected here. 26326-30 were initially painted in the ‘old’ Stagecoach livery but we understand that they have now been repainted into dealer white pending application of the new ‘Stagecoach Local’ livery. There is a suggestion they could be allocated to Dunfermline and displace older 26001-05 to Stagecoach Cumbria & North Lancashire where they will be allocated to West Cumbria for the Sellafield contract.
We understand that the first of around 52 new ADL Enviro 400MMCs for this fleet have been completed at ADL's Falkirk factory. It is our understanding they will carry fleet numbers 11504-11555
The company has advised us that it has taken the decision to cancel the planned vintage running day and family event that it had been planning to hold in Cheltenham on Saturday May 16th 2020. It is hoped that it may be possible to reschedule the event for later in the year.
Look out for more Dart SLFs arriving here. We understand that 34562 and 35190, which are soon to be stood down at Stagecoach Cumbria & North Lancashire will be assessed for transfer to this fleet.