Skeleton Service: A Special Hallowe’en Short Story

East of the M60’s first short story for All Hallow’s Eve

Any reference to persons, chocolate bars, ales, bus routes, public houses, living or dead are purely coincidental. Thank you.

Even in the wettest of days, The Bowling Green would attract a great many vertical alfresco drinkers, mainly of the smoking kind. Therefore, getting a seat in the public bar was less than troublesome, a contrast to the adjacent Ash Tree. It was this issue alone which influenced Robbie’s and Callum’s choice of pub that night. They had two pints of Carling each, and this was their last stop before boarding their 348 to Carrbrook. Continue reading “Skeleton Service: A Special Hallowe’en Short Story”

Lights, Camera… Atlantean! GM Buses’ Link With Weatherfield

East of the M60 on another lost bus route

3320 MCW Metrobus D320 LNB and 3001 Leyland Olympian ANA 1Y (both Northern Counties bodies)
Not quite the cobbles but seen here is MCW Metrobus 3320 at the Greater Manchester Museum of Transport, possibly typical fare on the GM Buses TV Special.

Today, a trip to Weatherfield is a tram ride away to MediaCityUK, or a X50 or 250 from Piccadilly Gardens. In recent times the production lot for Coronation Street, along with the ITV contractor formerly known as Granada Television, has moved to the banks of the Manchester Ship Canal. Continue reading “Lights, Camera… Atlantean! GM Buses’ Link With Weatherfield”

Less Remembered 1980s Children’s Programmes #1: Hold Tight

Our first of many posts on children’s television programming of the 1980s

1982 called East of the M60 HQ just now. It was looking for a copy of Ronco’s Breakout album and wondered why King Trigger’s The River didn’t get the UK chart position it deserved. Subsequently, some person in Preppy attire came around with this weird device. It was a primitive computer with rubber keys, a portable cassette recorder, Kempston joystick interface and an audio tape.

A thirty-something female attired as a Sloane Ranger came and told me to type ‘LOAD “alton”‘ but the dreaded B, N, M and Symbol Shift keys were being sluggish as usual. Then, 15 minutes later, mug of Yorkshire Tea and an ‘R Tape Loading Error’ message later, it returned these results: Continue reading “Less Remembered 1980s Children’s Programmes #1: Hold Tight”

Tameside Bus Service Changes, 27 October 2013: A Matter of Timing

Traffic conditions behind recent set of changes

  • Daytime retiming of Pioneer Depot Team’s 346 journeys;
  • Peak hour tweaks to 41 route;
  • Route changes to 353, 354, 387 and 396.
First Greater Manchester Dennis Dart SLF, Marshall bodywork, X785 HLR, outside Hyde bus station
Could common sense prevail? The Pioneer Depot Team will be retiming their 346’s daytime journeys from the 27 October. At present, bunching is a regular problem among Dukinfield passengers.

The modern day scourge of traffic congestion and residents parking their vehicles on the kerb are the main driver towards this autumn’s service changes. Throughout Tameside, most particularly Dukinfield and Ashton-under-Lyne, they mainly affect First Greater Manchester’s routes operated by the Pioneer Depot Team. Continue reading “Tameside Bus Service Changes, 27 October 2013: A Matter of Timing”

‘Bridge Bags Briggs: Harvey’s Replacement Sees Return of Former Captain

Keith Briggs and Andy Ferne return to Bower Fold

They say a week is a long time in politics. This is also true of Association Football from World Cup qualifiers to the Skrill North. Within the space of nine days, Stalybridge Celtic have replaced their previous manager Jim Harvey with two familiar faces. One of them was Steve Burr’s captain from 2007 to 2010. The second face has had ties with Stalybridge Celtic on a commercial level for 30 years, and scouted for Steve Burr. Continue reading “‘Bridge Bags Briggs: Harvey’s Replacement Sees Return of Former Captain”

Tameside College Set To Return To Ashton Town Centre

£76 million deal sees replacement for TAC building and upgraded facilities for Tameside College

  • New Camp Street campus for ‘A’ Level and Media students;
  • Son of TAC to incorporate new offices for Tameside MBC and classrooms for vocational courses;
  • Beaufort Road campus to be upgraded;
  • Clarendon Road and Stockport Road centres to be sold off to finance deal.

The fate of Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council’s TAC building has been sealed thanks to a £76 million deal. In 2015, Tameside College will return to Ashton-under-Lyne town centre twenty years after the sale of its Warrington House centre near The Station public house. Known as VisionTameside, it will see a return to the college’s roots with the new base close to Warrington House and the Heginbottom Institute, adjacent to Ashton Central Library. Continue reading “Tameside College Set To Return To Ashton Town Centre”

Endangered 20th Century Buildings and Structures of Northern England: The Not So Perfect Ten

Architectural treasures under threat or once under threat of demolition, or insensitive development in Northern England

Awaiting demolition? The Clarence Flour Mills has lay in waiting for the demolition men since its closure in December 2005.

The Economist, often an esteemed journal contained an article which echoed Policy Exchange’s plans for the development of Northern England. To be precise, we should mean non-development, controlled demolition, managed decline or a second Harrying Of The North. In other words, turning Kingston-upon-Hull, Burnley, Hartlepool and Middlesbrough into smaller versions of Detroit. Continue reading “Endangered 20th Century Buildings and Structures of Northern England: The Not So Perfect Ten”

Have Smartphone, Will Travel: 21st Century Journey Planning

Planning bus, train and tram journeys online

If like myself you live in an urban part of the United Kingdom, you may be semi-familiar with the public transport network. Today, with internet access more commonplace, there is little or no excuse to consider making part of, or the whole of your journey on public transport. In some cases, you can plan the next leg of your journey using your bus or train’s on-board WiFi connection. Continue reading “Have Smartphone, Will Travel: 21st Century Journey Planning”

In Pictures: Ashton-under-Lyne’s New Trams

A pictorial round up of the Metrolink’s latest addition

As promised yesterday, pictures of the Metrolink trams and station on the opening day of the Ashton-under-Lyne to Droylsden section. Let’s hear it for the trams! Continue reading “In Pictures: Ashton-under-Lyne’s New Trams”

Metrolink Comes to Ashton-under-Lyne

Tram services resume after a 75 year gap

The first tram is set to leave Ashton-under-Lyne at 0559 hours on the 09 October. Seen here (and purposefully doctored for this article of course) is Flexity Swift M5000 3006, featuring MediaCityUK branding.

Tomorrow morning, Metrolink’s East Manchester Line will be completed, offering Ashtonians a third way to the centre of Manchester. The new light rail service from Ashton-under-Lyne to Bury will not only offer commuters a less crowded way to Manchester city centre, but also reinstate a link to another Lancashire town, absent since September 2004. Continue reading “Metrolink Comes to Ashton-under-Lyne”