Just the usual back to school changes and other tweaks

  • 24 route falls victim to FirstGroup rationalisation policies;
  • Changes to 181 and 182 routes.

Could the remnants of FirstGroup’s Greater Manchester operation be in Oldham a little bit longer? September’s forthcoming service changes suggest so, unless you board the 24 from Rochdale.

Though much has been written about First Greater Manchester’s retreat from Tameside, the Oldham-based operator is chipping away at what’s left of its Rochdale routes. The peak hour only 24 service to Manchester will be withdrawn without replacement. Up to Broadway, it follows the 409’s route before reaching Manchester city centre.

After the Second World War, the 24 route transferred from Yelloway Motor Services’ ownership to Rochdale Corporation. In recent years it has been downgraded to a peak hours only service.

The 181‘s daytime service will be cut from half hourly to once hourly. Its sister route, the 182, will operate as normal in the daytime, though see changes to its peak hour journeys. Its AM peak journeys will begin at Milnrow instead of Rochdale Interchange. They will be depart at 0559, 0623, and 0653.

On Saturday mornings, the 0514 from Chadderton will depart at 0544. The 0551 from Shaw to Manchester will be withdrawn. In the opposite direction, the two Manchester to Shaw journeys (0550 and 0650) will be replaced by one at 0620.

Summer timetables

From the 01 September, the following routes will revert to their non-summertime timetables:

  • 58: Oldham – Higginshaw – Shaw – Newhey – Milnrow – Rochdale (First Greater Manchester);
  • 59: Rushcroft – Shaw – Oldham – Chadderton – Middleton – Cheetham Hill – Piccadilly (First Greater Manchester);
  • 76: Oldham – Hollinwood – Failsworth – Miles Platting – Ancoats – Piccadilly (Stagecoach Manchester);
  • 81: Piccadilly – Moston – Werneth – Oldham – Derker (First Greater Manchester);
  • 81A: Piccadilly – Moston – Werneth – Oldham – Lees – Holts Estate (First Greater Manchester);
  • 83: Piccadilly – Hightown – Miles Platting – Failsworth – Hollinwood – Oldham – Watersheddings – Sholver (First Greater Manchester);
  • 180: Piccadilly – Miles Platting – Failsworth – Hollinwood – Hollins – Oldham – Lees – Grasscroft – Greenfield (First Greater Manchester);
  • 181: Piccadilly – Failsworth – Chadderton – Heyside – Newhey – Milnrow – Rochdale (First Greater Manchester);
  • 182: Piccadilly – Failsworth – Chadderton – Heyside – Newhey – Milnrow – Rochdale (First Greater Manchester);
  • 184: Piccadilly – Failsworth – Hollinwood – Hollins – Oldham – Lees – Grasscroft – Uppermill – Diggle – Huddersfield (First Greater Manchester);
  • 350: Ashton-under-Lyne – Mossley – Micklehurst – Hey Farm Estate – Greenfield – Uppermill – Dobcross – Delph – Scouthead – Waterhead – Greenacres – Oldham (First Greater Manchester);
  • 409: Rochdale – Royton – Oldham – Hathershaw – Ashton-under-Lyne (First Greater Manchester);
  • 425: Fitton Hill – Oldham – Holts Estate (First Greater Manchester).

Where next?

Once again, another quiet set of changes for Oldham passengers. Compared with developments in Tameside and Rochdale, Oldham has been sheltered from the worst excesses of FirstGroup’s retreat.

With more edges trimmed away, will the 409 be more reliable? Are there still a few more surprises and shocks along the way. The story continues. (Tune in to our next episode which should be due out by the end of October.)

S.V., 06 August 2019.

One thought on “Oldham and Saddleworth Bus Service Changes, 01 September 2019

  1. Just had chance to read up on the 359 Holmfirth to Oldham South Pennine bus. It will be a Wednesday only service, timed in the same style as the Ashton bus with 2 daytime journeys each way timed around the same times as the Ashton bus, so, from no buses to Holmfirth just a few years ago, Greenfield will now have a link to Holmfirth 3 days a week (Tue 357, Wed 359 and Sat 352). At Greenfield the 359 will travel into Oldham via the 180 route, but terminating on Yorkshire Street. If only the Peak National Park would promote these services, although by using them only a small number of cars would be taken off the road, they still provide good car free access from Holmfirth to Dovestones, especially the more frequent 352, and lets face it, that small car park needs all the space it can get lol.


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