25 October 2017

Dartmouth drops a deck

This weekend sees a few changes to several Stagecoach routes across their network but one local change of interest is the Plymouth - Kingsbridge - Dartmouth 3:

There will be some minor changes to the timetable to ensure the ongoing sustainability of this route, which runs through some of the most rural and beautiful parts of Devon and the South Hams.

Some early morning and early evening journeys will no longer run, and the occasional journeys which diverted off into Slapton Village will no longer do so. These changes are being made due a combination of very low usage and a reduction in funding from Devon County Council towards the parts of the route that carry the fewest people. The majority of the service runs without any financial support from the Council, and relies purely on the income from the people using it to cover its running costs.


Stagecoach 10502 SN65ZHU

The service will now also be operated using single deck vehicles to help keep running costs to a minimum, but following discussions with Kingsbridge College and Devon County Council a double decker will provide a single journey from Dartmouth to Kingsbridge College each day to ensure sufficient space for children travelling to school.

The heavily discounted young persons Kingsbridge Termrider ticket will no longer be available, but a new Dart King Termrider ticket will be introduced in connection with the school journey above for young people to travel between Dartmouth and Kingsbridge at any time. The rest of our ticket prices remain unchanged, with our Explorer ticket, Megarider Gold and Termrider Gold remaining excellent value for a service of this nature.

Clearly this means there is a need for more single deckers for Plymouth, so there are some more E200s on the way:

E200MMC's 37440-37444 leaving Stagecoach Merseyside & South Lancs (Chester depot) for Plymouth, presume fairly imminently.....E400's 19569-19572 going from Torquay to Stagecoach Merseyside & South Lancs (unknown depot) this coming week.

Its a shame that the route is no longer double decked as the Kingsbridge - Dartmouth section is a lovely ride from the top deck.

Of course it wasn't that long ago that First ran this route as the 93 using double deckers. For a while at least it was properly marketed with a decent livery

First 33175

Although mostly it was just standard livery buses

First 32954

Of course for many years this was the best local route to ride on VR, this one from 2002 when the route was extended to Derriford Hospital at peak times. Sadly like most First efforts there was zero publicity for this extra service and it was soon dropped.

First Western National 1199 LFJ843W


  1. 10499 and 10500 both seen up exeter this morning

  2. two stagecoach darts and 2 stagecoach solos came down to plymouth this week too, maybe darts for this route

  3. I agree that it's a pity that the service is going single deck, although if loadings aren't that good (especially for new Enviro 400s) I suppose it's a decision Stagecoach have to take.

    However, I've travelled the route twice in summer time (the first time 4 years ago in First days), and on each occasion we had double deck loads at the Dartmouth end. Will Enviro 200s cope in the summer? I have my doubts.

  4. This is interesting, wonder if the school Decker will run during hols especially in summer as it is a popular scenic route, would a single deck manage loadings?

    1. I am sure SC will revert to Decker in Summer hols etc

  5. Dident the kingsbridge- dartmouth section have a open top ex grampion atlantean 1 summer


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