Tameside and Glossop Bus Service Changes, 27 October 2019

Welcome return for Hyde – Tintwistle – Glossop bus route

  • 397 service revived after eight year gap;
  • 396 rerouting in Smallshaw and Hurst?
  • Tweaks to 409’s daytime service.

If you have read about FirstGroup’s changes for the Oldham and Saddleworth area, you will be happy to find that the latest service changes in Tameside and Glossop makes for calmer reading.

For once, we have this rare beast of a new bus service. Or more specifically, a revived bus service. A link that has been severed since June 2011.

The return of the 397 route

In most recent times, the 341 route has been Hyde’s only bus route from Glossop to Hyde. With its meandering route, you may need sandwiches (though I would refrain from eating them whilst on Melandra Castle Road due to the humps).

Before June 2011, SpeedwellBus operated the 397 route from Hyde to Glossop via Tintwistle and Dinting. Funding had cut the route from once hourly to five return journeys, leading to its withdrawal and a campaign to save the route on social media.

From the 28 October, GB Coaches of Audenshaw will be reinstating this all-important link. At present, car-less Hydonians need to walk from John Kennedy Road to Back Moor for a 237, in order to complete their journey to Hollingworth or Tintwistle.

The new service will operate every hour from Monday to Saturday, departing from Hyde bus station at five past the hour (from 0805 to 1705). In the opposite direction, five past the hour from Glossop [Henry Street] from 0905 to 1805. Two return journeys will call at Heath Road (0948 and 1148 to Glossop, 1107 and 1307 to Hyde).

From Glossop to Hyde, the journey time is 48 minutes. Glossop to Hadfield via Dinting Road is 16 minutes, avoiding the TESCO roadblock on High Street West. Hattersley to Tintwistle is a mere 12 minutes from John Kennedy Road.

We hope the 397 route gets a good reception. As always, System One Any Bus season tickets will cover the route in its entirety. For pensioners’ pass holders, the earliest 397 to Glossop from Hyde (and vice versa) are the 1005 journeys.

Other service changes

As detailed in our Oldham and Saddleworth changes, the 396 route from Newton Heath to Ashton-under-Lyne will be tweaked. It is proposed that its route in Hurst and Smallshaw will be reviewed to cover more areas left high and dry by FirstGroup’s September changes.

The only FirstGroup route that will be seeing changes this month will be the 409. Its weekday and Saturday service will be seeing a slight change in frequency. This time from every being 10 minutes to every 9 minutes. A welcome move, but nothing on the halcyon days when the ‘9 bus used to be every six minutes in 2002 (albeit with smaller Mercedes Citaro buses).

Stagecoach Manchester will be rejigging the times of four routes. These include the retiming of morning journeys on the 330 from Ashton to Stockport. Their 336 and 337 Hurst Circular routes, and their Coke Zero version of the 389 route will also be retimed. Since the previous set of service changes, there has been reports of poor timekeeping and missing buses. Other complaints include the omission of Hague Estate and Stalybridge bus station from the newly revised route.

Glossop changes

Apart from the revived 397 route, no other changes are proposed for Glossop bus passengers. As far as cutbacks are concerned, the biggest one entails concessionary fares.

Whilst 16 to 17 year olds in Greater Manchester will be enjoying free bus travel through TfGM’s Our Pass, spare a thought for those in Glossop. To save £88,000, Derbyshire County Council will be scrapping the b_line discount scheme.

At present, there are two b_lines: b_line 1 allows for child fares like the iGo pass in TfGMland. The b_line 2 offers a 25% discount for bus and train fares for full time college students and apprentices and more akin to the long-defunct Teen Travel Club.

Therefore, from the age of eleven onwards, you have to pay adult fares if you fancy a trip to the Peak District. According to Derbyshire County Council, bus operators and rail franchises offer superior schemes. If you live in Glossop, Stagecoach Manchester’s EasyRider only covers the Greater Manchester area. Regular passengers can buy a cross-boundary season ticket, but there is one problem: the 237 is operated by MCT Travel after 7pm.

Therefore, senior school children travelling from Tintwistle to Glossop will have to pay full fare if they only make sporadic journeys. The fare doesn’t come cheap at £2.50 for an adult single. Apart from losing discounted fares, they also lose other discounts that go towards stationery for college. Is there a case for moving Glossop into the Greater Manchester Combined Authority, using the same boundaries as the Tameside and Glossop Clinical Commissioning Group?

Where next?

We hope GB Coaches will make a success of the 397 route and that proposed changes to the 396 will mitigate the worst excesses of FirstGroup’s cuts. From Monday, all eyes will be focused on Transport for Greater Manchester’s public consultation towards a franchised bus network.

As soon as the consultation documents are released, please take the time to fight for better bus services in Tameside. If you’re held hostage by the 389’s omission of Hague Estate or cannot get to Hyde after 6pm, drop everything else for this worthwhile exercise. Get it done as soon as you can; I mean, what’s the point of having a brand spanking new bus station in Ashton if there’s no buses running at all?

S.V., 10 October 2019.

4 Comments Add yours

  1. John Ashton says:

    So far with the 397, neither DCC or TfGM are actively promoting it. I do hope that it shows in their timetable pages soon, so that it can be promoted `on the ground`
    There is a Facebook page set up by self. The person who has arranged the route is also on there. https://www.facebook.com/Hadfieldbus397/

    Like

  2. Leeds says:

    Hello, just a thought, will this have an effect on the 341? Last time I used the 341, it was a PM peak journey from Hyde to Glossop and although busy, not enough to justify anything larger than a Solo minibus, probably had no more than 15 on board with many getting off well before Glossop. I also noticed that it’s return journey to Hyde had a healthy load, however that too didn’t justify anything bigger than a solo. On the estate sections within Glossop, hardly anyone used those sections with one person getting off on Melandra Castle Road and one boarding up in Simondley.

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  3. John Hardman says:

    No-one has posted anything about the reason(s) for the non-appearance of the “397” daytime service between Hyde and Glossop: it was supposed to start late in October, according to the timetable printed by TfGM.

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    1. Hi John,

      On the Your 397 Facebook page (which is used to promote the route), the owner has made the following statement:

      Due to operational differences which have lead to the breakdown of a combined working relationship of the 397 between North Western Road Car and GB Coaches this service is delayed a few weeks while the Northwest Traffic commisioner accepts application for North Western Road Car’s own operating licence. I am working hard for this to start now ASAP; please be patient it will run…

      – Wayne Dawes MILT

      Therefore, he is hoping to revive the NWRCC name as a separate licence. One problem could be the intellectual property of NWRCC (pre-NBC) or the revived post-deregulation operator from Merseyside and Cheshire.

      I hope he gets things sorted out as soon as possible. The restoration of the 397 is long overdue.

      Warmly,

      Stuart.

      Like

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