Fifty Years a Bus Man: the Stagecoach Driver Recognised For Long Service

Stockport driver clocks up half a century behind the wheel

Between 1968 and 2018, the bus industry has changed beyond recognition. In place of public sector operators, private sector giants have taken over many of Britain’s bus services. One-man operation is something we take for granted nowadays.

Continue reading “Fifty Years a Bus Man: the Stagecoach Driver Recognised For Long Service”

Sinatra Fan Retires After 42 Years in Bus Industry

John Kevill hangs up clipboard after 42 years in the bus industry

John Kevill.
Yes, he did it his way: Driving Examiner John Kevill, retiring from Stagecoach Manchester on the 31 March. Image courtesy of Tangerine PR Ltd, 2017.

After 42 years of working for Greater Manchester Transport and its successors, John Kevill is hanging up his clipboard for good. For drivers who began their career on the Hyde Road skid pan or the Bennett Street training centre, Mr. Kevill is a familiar face.
Continue reading “Sinatra Fan Retires After 42 Years in Bus Industry”

My Life in the Company of Buses: Dukinfield and Bus Deregulation: Part 31, 2016

It’s in the air 

So far, 2016 has been an impressive year for me on a personal level. I have settled in my present position and am enjoying the new, more central surroundings. With a move from its previous HQ near Piccadilly station, my employer is closer to Salford Central and Manchester Victoria stations. Not least some sublime eateries and (inevitably), branches of Starbucks Coffee, Subway, Greggs, and a McDonalds on St. Ann’s Square.

Continue reading “My Life in the Company of Buses: Dukinfield and Bus Deregulation: Part 31, 2016”

My Life in the Company of Buses: Dukinfield and Bus Deregulation: Part 30, 2015

In the eye of the storm 

Sadly, my stint in Bredbury only lasted till the 30 January. In one way, it meant being free from the worst excesses of the A560. Then I existed on bits of work to avoid the DWP’s weaponised regime on unemployed people. This meant a brief return to Oldham (for odd copywriting and coding jobs), and the possibility of S.V. going it alone as a freelancer.

Continue reading “My Life in the Company of Buses: Dukinfield and Bus Deregulation: Part 30, 2015”

My Life in the Company of Buses: Dukinfield and Bus Deregulation: Part 29, 2014

The storm after the lull 

By 2014, I was working elsewhere in Greater Manchester. This time in Stockport (well, Bredbury to be precise), so most of my observations of the bus scene were biased towards the 330 route. The Young Auties’ pass proved to be a godsend for peak hour journeys and the odd journey to West Yorkshire.

Continue reading “My Life in the Company of Buses: Dukinfield and Bus Deregulation: Part 29, 2014”

My Life in the Company of Buses: Dukinfield and Bus Deregulation: Part 28, 2013

An uneasy peace 

One of the fringe benefits of working in Oldham was getting in touch with the Rochdale and Oldham bus scene. Compared with the uneasy peace of the Dukinfield scene, 2013 was an interesting year. Professionally for me, it was a mixed year with an appalling second half.

Continue reading “My Life in the Company of Buses: Dukinfield and Bus Deregulation: Part 28, 2013”

My Life in the Company of Buses: Dukinfield and Bus Deregulation: Part 27, 2012

Throw those displays wide, one year like this would…

In 2011, East of the M60‘s 26 part series, My Life in the Company of Buses finished at (quelle surprise) 2011. The original series of posts were written to document the first 25 years of bus deregulation. Both on a personal level and in relation to the bus scene in Dukinfield.

With 2016 marking the 30th anniversary of bus deregulation, East of the M60 thought it was the done thing to bring the saga to 2016. A lot has happened in the five years since October 2011. Not always for the better.

A week after I completed the original saga, I was on one of these Workfare type jobbies. In 2011, getting more than two weeks free labour out of you was (and remains) unethical. Being on the same placement six months later with no job at the end, unforgivable. Had East of the M60 met its maker in 2012, this fellow may have followed suit and become a ‘success’ in the eyes of the then Home Secretary.

Instead, I am here to start the next parts of My Life in the Company of Buses. Sit back, relax, and take the next bus to 2012. Continue reading “My Life in the Company of Buses: Dukinfield and Bus Deregulation: Part 27, 2012”

Bus Boss Celebrates 40th Year in the Industry

Stagecoach Manchester chief marks four decade tenure

Leyland Atlantean, Christopher Bowles and Enviro400H.
Park Royal bodied Leyland Atlantean 7001, an Enviro400H and Christopher Bowles, with the numerical indicator denoting his length of service. (Photograph © 2014 Tangerine PR Ltd) 

Greater Manchester, 1974: a truly different place to the conurbation we see today. Firstly, our buses were orange and white. Manchester United was playing Second Division football; the Hulme Crescents, over a year after completion saw rats and cockroaches. Stalybridge Celtic was members of the Cheshire County League whilst Mossley played in the Northern Premier League – then the highest division after Football League Division Four. Continue reading “Bus Boss Celebrates 40th Year in the Industry”

The Road Least Travelled: Ashton’s Lesser Spotted Circular

Our third lesser known bus route within Greater Manchester

If you’re au fait with Tameside’s bus scene, you may be familiar with the 331 and 333 circular routes from Ashton-under-Lyne. They were originally Ashton Corporation’s 1 and 3 services with the former reaching Hurst in a clockwise direction via Broadoak Road. Continue reading “The Road Least Travelled: Ashton’s Lesser Spotted Circular”

The Road Least Travelled: Hyde’s Other 344 Route

Another obscure bus journey throughout Greater Manchester

Optare Solo MX08 MYJ, Stotts of Oldham, Oldham Bus Station
Our second 344’s more illustrious sister, loading at Oldham Central Bus Station.

At Hyde bus station, there are two 344 routes. One is the Backbower Circular, which co-works with the 342. There is also a lesser known 344, one which comprises of a single journey.

Continue reading “The Road Least Travelled: Hyde’s Other 344 Route”