The Clippercard Makes a Comeback!

Clipper ticket resurrects spirit of the Clippercard on Metrolink trams

The Clippercard is dead… long live the Clippercard! Well, that’s how we may have reported on the self-cancelling ticket’s demise if East of the M60 was around in 2004. Years after the original ticket’s demise, Greater Manchester Transport’s ten-trips-for-the-price-of-nine tickets still carry fond memories. You might have travelled with a Clippercard by fair means (with a black plastic wallet) or foul (by boarding and passing the card on to your friend).

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EM60's Metrolink Zonal Map

A Beginner’s Guide to Metrolink Zonal Fares

How Transport for Greater Manchester’s zonal fares for Metrolink trams will work

Travelling by rail-based transport in and around Greater Manchester can be a pain in the you know whats at times. On Network Rail metals, walk-on fares, advance purchase fares, and peak hour restrictions add to the confusion. If you take a Metrolink tram, another set of fares again but help is at hand, thanks to changes to its fare structure.

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Go-Goodwins Sell Buses to Rotala

Eccles based bus and coach company sells bus routes for a million

Enviro 300, Go Goodwins
An Enviro300 single decker loading at Altrincham Interchange in 2009 – back when the Eccles-based company expanded its stage carriage operations via GMPTE contracted routes.

With effect from the 31 August this year, Go Goodwins will transfer its bus operations to Rotala. The Eccles-based company, noted for its coach operations, expanded its stage carriage operations in 2009. Their growth came via winning GMPTE/TfGM tendered services, mainly in and around Trafford. This has included local services in Altrincham and Eccles.

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Metrolink’s Silver Jubilee: 25 Things About Our Light Rail System

Twenty-five things you may have forgotten about Greater Manchester’s trams

Flexity Swift M5000 3060b, Ashton-under-Lyne
Tram 3060 loading at the Ashton-under-Lyne stop on its first day of operation.

Where were you on the 06 April 1992? For me, it was a bog standard Monday. I was in Second Year – officially Year Eight – at All Saints R.C. High School. With hindsight, I should have bunked off school and caught a 220 bus to Victoria station. On that very date, the first part of Greater Manchester’s Metrolink system opened, from Bury to Manchester Victoria station. The groundwork was set for a light rail system which took the city by storm.

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A6, the Road to Ashton-under-Lyne and Denton

Another Lost Bus Routes of Greater Manchester special

Paper Little Gem MCW Metrorider
Image © 2010 Matthew Clark.

The timing of this post coincides with one major bus-related event. That of Go-Goodwins’ revival of the Little Gem brand. With minibuses, in a version of the GMT orange, white, and brown livery. Most importantly, the return of Ken Mortimer’s Crillee Black logotype. Instead of the Dodge and Iveco minibuses of old, Optare Solos are the order of the day. With the excellent reputation of the Go-Goodwins brand, we at East of the M60 think they may well succeed. Continue reading “A6, the Road to Ashton-under-Lyne and Denton”

Trams-Lancs Express: The Next Generation Metrolink Project?

Calls for new circular line backed by MPs and councillors

Metrolink Circle Line diagram
A good idea? One wonders. I know for sure that Walkden Interchange should actually be Swinton Interchange, but the map is for diagrammatic purposes (So Ner!).

The Metrolink: the bane or joy of its 30 million or so passengers, is as much a Manchester icon as The Haçienda, Coronation Street, and Alan Turing. Its use of former BR lines and on-street sections is for many a suitable alternative to the car or the bus. Much of the system up to Phase 3B is complete. At this moment, a route to the Trafford Centre and a Stockport extension is next to follow. Continue reading “Trams-Lancs Express: The Next Generation Metrolink Project?”

Calling All Altrinchamians: Helping Hands Needed For Community Groups

Wilkinson’s Altrincham branch offers a helping hand to the local community.

The garden at Crossacres Resource Centre, Wythenshawe.
One example of Wilkinson’s Helping Hands projects, only a few miles from Altrincham; the garden at the Crossacres Resource Centre. Photograph © 2014 Tangerine PR Ltd.

At the early part of this month, East of the M60 looked at Wilkinson’s Helping Hands scheme in Wythenshawe. This time, only a few miles west, the Worksop store chain is calling on people in Altrincham and surrounding area to suggest a local good cause. Continue reading “Calling All Altrinchamians: Helping Hands Needed For Community Groups”

From Worksop Parramore to Wembley

A spotlight on the 2013-14 F.A. Challenge Cup competition

By next week, the world’s greatest and oldest cup competition will be in full swing. Everybody says the absolute zenith of the competition at its finest is the final tie at Wembley. I beg to differ. What has made, and continues to make the F.A. Cup one of the most revered competitions in the world is its qualifying rounds, leading up to the First Round Proper. It always seems to lose some of its allure when the last non-league side has been eliminated. Continue reading “From Worksop Parramore to Wembley”

Farewell, Faithful Footbridge…

Disused footbridge to be demolished over two Sundays

Altrincham Interchange (facing bus park)
A view of Station House photographed with a Kodak Retinette camera, taken from the footbridge of Altrincham Interchange

One of Transport for Greater Manchester’s earliest links with the Greater Manchester Transport era will be severed this month.

The bus section of Altrincham Interchange will be remodelled this year, starting with the footbridge. Its link with the Stamford Quarter shopping centre will be dismantled over two Sundays (or three if the weather’s been dire), starting from the 13th May. Shortly after the remodelling of Stamford New Road, and the installation of a pelican crossing in recent years, the footbridge had fallen into disuse, though still accessible from the precinct. Continue reading “Farewell, Faithful Footbridge…”

East of the M60 Advent Calendar: 16 December 2011

16. An Arriva North West Alexander bodied DAF DB250LF

DAF DB250LF/Alexander ALX400, T296 FGN, Arriva North West, Piccadilly Gardens

Arriva North West’s DAF DB250LF joined Wythenshawe depot via London (hence the staircase position). On first glance, it could be mistaken for a Dennis Trident – given the similarity of the Alexander bodywork seen on Stagecoach Manchester’s Tridents. This example is loading at Piccadilly Gardens. On leaving the city centre, it will take a circuitous route into Altrincham via Whalley Range, Ashton-on-Mersey and Brooklands.

Bus Route of Christmas Past: Oldham – Mossley (Brookbottom). Oldham Corporation’s 16 route entered Top Mossley via Lees Road and Grotton, starting from the Town Hall bus stop. In 1973 – 74, it was renumbered 416. On the 20 July 1980, it was absorbed by an expanded 343 service, offering Grottonians a direct route with Bottom Mossley, Stalybridge and Hyde.

Bus Route of Christmas Present: Arriva North West’s 16 route is a Goliath among Altrincham to Manchester routes (65 minutes compared with 50 on the 263 and 25 on the tram). On Monday to Friday, the service is operated every half hour along its full length, with two evening journeys from Altrincham operated by Finglands (three from Manchester). These are operated daily. By contrast, Arriva’s Saturday service only operates up to Sale! The Sunday service covers the full route, albeit every two hours with Finglands the sole operator.

S.V., 16 December 2011