04 December 2015

Business as usual in Cornwall

Despite the government pledging franchising powers under a devolution proposal, Cornwall County Council has now announced that it does not plan to go down the franchising route, but instead would use it as a ‘last resort’.

The surprise franchising announcement created uncertainty, especially as the county has made big cuts to bus funding in recent years, which, in part led to the collapse of Western Greyhound in March.

Now, Cornwall Portfolio Holder for Transport Bert Biscoe says: “We are seeking the power to franchise as a back-up in the event that for one reason or another a partnership approach can’t achieve our aims. Our overall objective is to integrate rail and bus.”

The Government this week has said that it is considering the case for a new rail franchise covering Devon and Cornwall.

Route One


© Richard Smith


I am sure that First will be relieved to hear that news as it at least removed any uncertainty and lets them get on with the business of running buses in Cornwall as the main operator in the county.


  1. Good News Graham,lets hope that First Bus as the Current Main Operator Continue to Improve the Look and the Quality of The Fleet,Reliability and Build a more Robust Network to serve the Region.I recall back in 2003 Better Buses for Cornwall Campaign started to Remove all of The Bristol VRs worked up to a point in 2005 - 2006 around 20 New Vehicles appeared and within 3 Years had disappeared again,I think the current Cascades being received although some are 12-15 Years old are an improvement on some of The vehicles that are being Replaced,would be Nice to see 30-40 Vehicles appear in The Next couple of years and more 5-8 Year Cascades see Service in The Area.

  2. New buses next year

  3. Same for PCB so newer buses will cascade on to Cornwall. This will leave the Cornwall bus network in the best state it has been in years. FGW need to pull there finger out and work with PCB and First and not expect the bus network to bend over backwards. It works both ways then Big Bert will have no need to push for devolution. I expect Mr Carter and Co were putting some big pressure on to get that decision.

    1. At Anon 4th Dec. For a start its Great Western Railway now! Secondly its much harder to change train times than it is bus times, as GWR would have to send a request to Network Rail, Network rail have to sent it to the transport minister etc. It can take somewhere between 6 months to a year to change a trains journey. Compare that to a bus which can take about 6 weeks.

      Another thing I don't think it would be a good idea to give Devon & Cornwall its own rail franchise, mainly because there have been some improvements over the last few years down to GWR/FGW replacing 2 coach trains with HSTs, there won't be that option if the franchise split. GWR is also working hard with DCC to have a half hourly Paignton to Exmouth service and possibly a service to Okehampton.

    2. Good Afternoon,does anyone know if anymore of The 53 Plate Dennis Darts have been Re Painted into The Olympia Livery I know 1 has been painted a while,also Have the 2 Mayflower Branded Double Deckers been Re Painted yet.

  4. The Mayflowers are about to go to Buses of Somerset. Painting in Olympia is continuing but has slowed for a few weeks while the Bodmin contract painters paint BoS B6s.

  5. Surprised that the Mayflower branded Tridents see going to Taunton, have the Yorkshire B7s arrived yet does anyone know, must be in January /February when the Final Roofed Olympians are Withdrawn from Service, presumably First Kernow will be looking to have More Single Deckers than Double Deckers looking at the Withdrawal /Cascades /Transfers happening at The moment.

    1. No it's the opposite, with a number of deckers replacing singles.
      The Mayflowers are a loan, convenient because they will be painted in Taunton before return.
      Cornwall has received 1 of 2 Tridents from Midlands, has 5 Tridents imminent from South Yorkshire, 3 B7TLs due before year end from West Yorkshire, and will then get the 8 Tridents/E400s from Plymouth in January. There are currently 16 Olympians in use in Cornwall.


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