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24 October 2014

Torpoint Treated

First Devon & Cornwall continue their run of positive service changes:

NEWS: Bus service changes and new fare offering in Torpoint will provide improved links to new health centre

Changes are being made to services operated by First in Torpoint provide better bus connections for staff and patients using the town’s new health centre which is due to open in the New Year.

From Sunday 2 November, changes to Services 81 from Plymouth to Torpoint and Inswork will enable journeys to serve the health centre in Trevol Road.

The Monday to Friday timetable is being revised with most journeys now terminating at HMS Raleigh. Buses from Torpoint Ferry will serve Great Park every 30 minutes alternating with direct buses which will miss out Great Park on their way to HMS Raleigh. These will run to the ferry on their return. The Saturday timetable will remain unchanged apart from some slight re-timings to early evening services. The Sunday services will be unaffected by the changes.

At the same time a new £1 fare (50p for those age 5-18 or NUS card holders of any age) will be introduced for all single trips on the 81 between the Torpoint Ferry Terminal (Torpoint side) and HMS Raleigh.

Commenting on the changes, Paul Smith, First Devon’s Operations Manager said: “Feedback about these changes have been very positive so far. This is good news for Torpoint as it will mean staff and patients going to and from the health centre will have peace of mind in knowing that there will be regular bus services to ensure they arrive on time for work and for their appointments.

“The other good news is that we are introducing a new £1 fare for all single trips within Torpoint and we hope this will encourage people, especially those who are not currently First customers or have not travelled on public transport for a while, to reconsider using our buses for their local journeys.”

First 32758

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23 October 2014

Carmel Cant Continue

BBC News   Devon s Carmel Coaches ceases trading after licence lossA Devon coach firm which was stripped of its operating licence is to cease trading, managers say. Carmel Coaches said the decision to stop trading on 14 November had been made after losing an appeal aimed at keeping its licence. The company appealed to the Transport Tribunal after it was stripped of its licence in June because of safety failures and poor record keeping. The firm said it would to ensure job losses were kept to a minimum.
Carmel Coaches ran bus routes for schools services and private hire from depots in Northlew and Exeter.
Sarah Bell, traffic commissioner for the West of England, revoked its licence and those of two of its directors over "woeful failures" and safety concerns. Issues included serious defects not being fixed and poor record keeping of safety issues over a number of years, she said. The appeal heard the firm's MoT failure rate was double the 18% national average and one brake defect was reported eight times before something was done. At that hearing, company director Tony Hazell admitted the firm had expanded too fast but said maintenance had improved.
Speaking of the company closing, Mr Hazell said arrangements "are being made for all future contracts and bookings to be honoured". He added: "We are working hard to ensure staff find continued employment and job losses will be kept to a minimum."
One of the firm's vehicles was involved in a coach crash at Looe in Cornwall in May where two people died although no defects were found. The traffic commissioner said she gathered her evidence before the crash and her decision did not reflect the incident.

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22 October 2014

Solo Swap Shop Etc

First have been swapping Solos: 53110 and 53111 have transferred to Yeovil - in their place Plymouth has received 50279 and 53005 from First Cymru. First 50279 ©Richard Smith

Some interesting news about a temporary route that Plymouth Citybus are running:
The 11 between Oke & tavi can't run via it's normal routing via Brentor at the moment due to one of the cattle grids having collapsed big time. It is going to be some weeks before it it repaired, and in the meantime traffic is diverted through the side gate used by horses. This is too small for the Scanias on the 11, so they are doing a doubleback at Lydford and running direct down the A386 to Mary Tavy. Meanwhile DCC is funding a shuttle to run between Lydford and Mary Tavy via Brentor using Citycoach's minibus. Sadly I couldn't get a photo yesterday as the minibus was away on a private hire so a Holman's minibus was in use (though it failed to arrive at either Mary Tavy or Lydford on my trip back north in the afternoon ...) Thanks to Richard Stedall for the update. He adds... If might be worth mentioning this shuttle on you blog to see if anyone can get any photos ... after all it's not every day Citycoach gets to run a rural bus service like this !

Tom Michaels updates us on Blue Flash 42: All the Blue Flash single and double deckers are having their branding changed to read City – Derriford – Tamerton/Tavistock. This is because in the new timetables the Tamerton runs will interwork with the Tavistock runs. 103 is in the paintshop being resprayed into Blue Flash livery. Sounds strange, though as detailed in my comment is far more efficient than the current workings with an extra bus which sit in Bretonside for 30 minutes a trip. Note also the every 30 minutes branding at the rear has been removed too for the Tamerton runs.
Citybus 504 has receieved the new lettering so far. Photo Here. 501 and 503 have not been changed yet.

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20 October 2014

Considerably Reluctant Hound

The problems continue at Western Greyhound : It is with considerable reluctance, as a result of an unprecedented driver shortage that we are forced to suspend some rarely, or lightly used late afternoon or evening journeys on Mondays to Saturdays for a period of time as we seek to recruit new drivers. We have carefully selected the journeys to cause the minimum of disruption to our passengers. The services affected are the 521, 529, 555, 556, 587 and 597. In many cases it is only 1 or 2 journeys on each service that will be affected.
521 - Newquay - St Dennis - St Austell The following journeys will be suspended from Monday 20th October 2014 until further notice. 1925 from St Austell to Newquay via St Dennis 2030 from Newquay to St Austell via St Dennis 2330 from Newquay to High Street via St Dennis.
529 - Bodmin - Roche - Bugle - Penwithick - St Austell The following journeys will be suspended from Monday 20th October 2014 until further notice. 2125 from St Austell to Roche and the 2200 return from Roche to St Austell.
555 - Padstow - Wadebridge - Bodmin - Bodmin Parkway Station The following journeys will be suspended from Monday 20th October until further notice. 1830 from Padstow to Bodmin Parkway and 1930 return from Bodmin Parkway to Padstow. the 2030 from Padstow to Bodmin Parkway and the 2210 return from Bodmin Parkway to Padstow.
556 - Padstow - St Merryn - Newquay Airport - Newquay the following journeys will be suspended from Monday 20th October until further notice. 1705 from Newquay to Padstow 2310 from Padstow to St Merryn
587 - Newquay - Perranporth - St Agnes - Truro The following journeys will be suspended from Monday 20th October 2014 until further notice. The 1905 from Newquay to Truro via Perranporth, and the 2205 from Newquay to Perranporth.
597 - Newquay - St Columb Major - Truro The following journey will be suspended from Monday 20th October 2014 until further notice. the 2045 from Truro to Newquay via St Columb Major
Western Greyhound 817 MX55WCT

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