More summertime tweaks
- Exactly what it says on the tin;
- MCT Travel gains 418 from M Travel;
- CityZap zapped.
Once again the summertime changes are a quiet one for Oldham and Saddleworth bus passengers. Apart from the usual adjusted summer times, there has only been four notable service changes.
Locally, the first one concerns the operation of the 418 service. Currently operated by M Travel, it offers a direct link to the Royal Oldham Hospital from Lees, Springhead, Austerlands, Waterhead, and Clarksfield. It also offers a direct link with Dr. Kershaw’s Hospice. The Monday to Saturday off-peak service will be operated by MCT Travel from the 30 July.
Secondly, the 412 service from Oldham to Middleton, via Royton, will see a change of timetable on Sundays and Bank Holidays. Though buses will depart at the same times from Oldham and Middleton, the journey from Boarshaw [Green Lane] to Middleton will take seven minutes instead of five minutes. Or six minutes in the opposite direction.
If you log on to Stagecoach Manchester’s website, it states that the 340 will see similar retiming based changes. Yours truly checked on Google Maps and the Transport for Greater Manchester website to find out about the changes. None are planned (for further reference, please peruse the Tameside and Glossop Service bulletin).
After the 21 July, National Express’ monopoly on Oldham – Leeds services will have been restored. Transdev’s CityZap service from Manchester to Leeds will cease operation. Unlike its sister route from Leeds to York, it hasn’t had the same success. Within Oldham Council boundaries, its cheap and cheerful service called at Chadderton [Broadway], sharing its stop with the 061 from Liverpool [Liverpool ONE Bus Station] to Leeds [Bus Station].
Perhaps CityZap might have offered more potential if: a) it had an half hourly service; or b) if they chose Oldham bus station as their preferred stop in OMBC boundaries.
Saddleworth service changes
As said in greater detail in the Tameside and Glossop service changes, there will be a slight change to the 353 service. From the 23 July, its link with Waterton Lane will be severed. Due to problems negotiating the road (our old friend On-Street Parking we think) and reversing, 353s will skip that section off Arundel Street. Could full size single deckers return to the 353 route?
- 24: Manchester [Piccadilly Gardens] Chadderton – Royton – Rochdale – First Greater Manchester;
- 52: Failsworth – North Manchester General Hospital – Pendleton [Salford Shopping City] – Eccles – First Greater Manchester;
- 52: Cheetham Hill – Pendleton [Salford Shopping City] – Eccles – intu Trafford Centre – First Greater Manchester;
- 74/76/76A: Oldham – Limeside – Failsworth – Manchester [Piccadilly Gardens] – Stagecoach Manchester;
- 83: Sholver – Greenacres – Oldham – Failsworth – Newton Heath – Manchester [Piccadilly Gardens] – First Greater Manchester;
- 180: Greenfield – Lees – Oldham – Hollinwood – Newton Heath – Manchester [Piccadilly Gardens] – First Greater Manchester;
- 181: (Rochdale – Milnrow) – Shaw – Royton – Chadderton – Miles Platting – Manchester [Piccadilly Gardens] – First Greater Manchester;
- 182: (Rochdale – Milnrow) – Shaw – Royton – Chadderton – Miles Platting — Manchester [Piccadilly Gardens] – First Greater Manchester;
- 184: Huddersfield – Diggle – Uppermill – Grotton – Lees – Oldham – Hollinwood – Manchester [Piccadilly Gardens] – First Greater Manchester;
- 409: Rochdale – Oldham – Ashton-under-Lyne – First Greater Manchester.
A lazy summer set of changes often leads to one thing: a more comprehensive set in September and the end of October.
With First and Stagecoach hanging fire on new bus purchases, the next few months could be interesting. The kerfuffle leading up to Andy Burnham’s bus franchising powers are behind their embargoes. Perhaps the extra expense of repainting their fleets to TfGM/The Office of the Mayor of Greater Manchester’s recommended colours has put them off.
S.V., 16 July 2018.