A Sheffield Transport bus in restored condition.

Crossing the South Pennines By Bus: A Lost Bus Routes Special

The threads left behind by Manchester’s lost bus links with Barnsley and Sheffield

The 04 January 2020 will soon be a significant anniversary date in trans-Pennine transport history. That date will be the 50th anniversary of the cessation of passenger services along the Woodhead line. Had the Woodhead line stayed open today, the all-electric route between Hadfield and Sheffield could have been useful to First Transpennine Express and East Midlands Trains. Not only as a diversionary route but also a viable alternative to the Hope Valley line.

Continue reading “Crossing the South Pennines By Bus: A Lost Bus Routes Special”

The X67: A Lost Bus Routes of Greater Manchester Special

Remembering Manchester’s express route to Chesterfield which, at one time, continued to Lincoln

Chesterfield ... where to catch a bus.
The East Midland Bus Station has changed dramatically since North Western Road Car Company was one of the X67’s joint operators. Image by Barry W*******, 2011. (Creative Commons License: Attribution-Some Rights Reserved).

Once upon a time, almost fifty years ago, it was possible to cross the Pennines by bus from Manchester, via a number of different routes. Without a change of bus en route. Today, there are only three routes where you can do just that. Two of which are National Express coach services: the 351 to Sheffield, and the 060 to Leeds via the M62. The only proper service bus to do that is First Greater Manchester’s 184 service to Huddersfield. Continue reading “The X67: A Lost Bus Routes of Greater Manchester Special”

Great Non-GMT Standard Double Deckers: The Not So Perfect Ten

A round-up of some of the greatest non-SELNEC/Greater Manchester Transport double deckers ever to grace the Earth

Regular readers on East of the M60 would be familiar with any of the references to Ralph Bennett (particularly the distinctive Bolton and Manchester Leyland Atlanteans), or the GMT standard double deckers. For this month’s Not So Perfect Ten, we are spreading our wings a little and focusing on groundbreaking vehicles from other parts of the United Kingdom. Both aesthetically and functionally. Continue reading “Great Non-GMT Standard Double Deckers: The Not So Perfect Ten”

Oldham’s Bus Termini, Past and Present

A look at Oldham’s bus stations and stops past and present

Oldham Termini Map
Oldham’s bus stations and stops past and present.

In the last century, Oldham has had a number of termini and through stops, some of which discontinued by means of town centre redevelopment. Most recently, this has meant the Metrolink works. During the last forty years, the town’s main bus station has shifted westwards from Mumps Bridge to Cheapside. Continue reading “Oldham’s Bus Termini, Past and Present”

Great Olympians of our Time #15: Mexborough and Swinton A658 OCX

Living proof of how well thought out heritage liveries look well on relatively new buses

Leyland Olympian, A658 OCX, Mexborough and Swinton
Seen in Heaton Park at the 2011 Trans Lancs Transport Show, A658 OCX often features at transport rallies.

After having a glut of Northern Counties Palatine bodied examples over the last four days, I thought it would be worth readdressing the balance. For our specimen, we have a 1984 Eastern Coach Works bodied Leyland Olympian.

A658 OCX entered service with the then National Bus Company’s Yorkshire Traction subsidiary. In NBC’s Poppy Red livery it entered service in June 1984. By 2006, it saw further service with Tees Valley Coaches for schools contracts before being withdrawn at the half way point of the year.

Shortly afterwards, Graham Law purchased A658 OCX for preservation. Instead of the poppy red of NBC, he opted for a green and cream Mexborough and Swinton livery, worn to commemorate to centenary of one of Yorkshire Traction’s predecessors.

It looks well in the heritage livery, and has often featured in transport rallies.

S.V., 10 August 2012.