X70 cleared for Easter take off
It is official. The Red Rocket Express service is set to begin its second mission on Easter 2014.
Classic Bus North West, who you may remember entered administration in December 2013. As a consequence, a small number of services were saved and transferred onto a new licence.
From Good Friday, under the aegis of Oakwood Travel Services’ licence, the X70 will embark on its second mission. The express service from Manchester [Chorlton Street] to Blackpool [Central Coach Station] will recommence at 0900 hours from Blackpool, arriving in Manchester for 1030.
In contrast with its maiden voyage, its timetable will be less ambitious. Instead of the previous 90 minute frequency, there will only be four return journeys. From Blackpool departing at 0900, 1030, 1500 and 1830 with return journeys leaving Manchester at 1030, 1500, 1630 and 2000.
There will also be further stops at Pleasure Beach Blackpool on the first journey from Manchester and the last journey from Blackpool Central Coach Station. All four return journeys will call at the intu Trafford Centre, allowing 30 minutes for the section between its bus station and Chorlton Street.
Online booking is also available via the Red Rocket Express website, but fares for RRE II will be £10.00 single for adults, aged persons and students – £2.00 more than last year’s rates. A Day Return would set you back £12.00 (£10.00 for students and aged persons) with the Flexi Return going for £15.00. However, there will be more generous child concessions, with all fares £5.00. Four people on a day trip to Blackpool or Manchester can purchase a £30.00 Any4 Day Return (£35.00 if the same group are holidaying in Blackpool with an Any4 Flexi Return).
Unlike its first mission, concessions for disabled people will apply. On production of an English, Scottish or Welsh Concession Pass or Concession Plus Pass, wannabe explorers can travel for the aged persons’ rates.
With Red Rocket Express cleared for take off next Friday, would Oakwood Travel Services’ revived X70 win friends in spite of a reduced frequency and higher fares? We shall see, given how local rail services may have had an effect on the X61 service’s reduced popularity in later years.
S.V., 11 April 2014.