Worcester's DD usage.

Bus and Coach operations, new or changed services and timetables for First Midland Red Buses Limited or its predecessor, Midland Red West Limited.
DD12
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Joined: 19:49 Monday 4th July 2016

Re: Worcester's DD usage.

Post by DD12 » 21:59 Wednesday 13th February 2019

Speedbird297 wrote:
17:03 Wednesday 13th February 2019
So if First carry on withdrawing old ALX 400’s in the next few years, which I won’t be surprised if they do as most of them are atleast around 18 years old currently and need to be replaced, that would mean we would have to get some new streetdecks to serve the routes that need DD’s.
Yes, I am very sad that the ALX 400 Tridents (VX54s) 33401 - 05, have not been repainted and refurbished, and I think it's highly likely that our MD will want to replace them with, say, cascaded Volvos with Wright Gemini bodies (perhaps some more recent ones from Manchester ?,
and perhaps one or two (Euro6) StreetDecks from Leicester ? )

When Midland Red West became part of the First Group, I relished the prospect of DDs returning to Worcester, which they started to do in small numbers, in 2002 onwards.

By 2004, I had stopped subscribing to BUSES magazine, and THIS forum didn't yet exist, so I had no hint that First Midland Red was about to take delivery of these 5 brand new DDs (33401-05) -- --
(although the reputation of services 57/58 in Redditch suggested that it was a possibility), and when I saw them delivered, brand new, on the patch at WR ( - along with some new A.D. Darts), I did not for a moment doubt they were intended for Redditch.

After 2 or 3 years, my hopes were fulfilled, and a couple of them were transferred to WR,
-- -- AND the most unlikely event imaginable ( - until the recent return of 6015 GHA415D !!), - was their appearance on First's "Blue Line" 32, which at the north end (where I grew-up) had been diverted through "posh" housing by Midland Red West using "Citibus" minibuses.

The late Ken Mills who was MD of the privatised MRW, did not value double-deckers and did not acquire any (except for a few, short-term for Redditch's 57/58), and he maybe is possibly still turning in his grave about the use of DDs anywhere in Worcester ! )

I can say that with respect to Mr.Mills, because when he introduced the Citibus minibus system to Worcester, they gave (for a short time) a 10 min frequency on this route, and plenty of early morning, evening, and Saturday and Sunday journeys.

IF politicians, local and national, had given Citibus the proper support it deserved
I reckon that there could be double the number of fare-paying passengers in some parts of Worcester !

However, the DDs have given me a lot of satisfaction !

Nothing lasts forever though, ( - not even London's Routemasters), and an "upside" for me will be IF our MD manages to substantially update our 7 oldest DDs BEFORE his "superiors" decide to sell FMR, -- IF they decide to ???

-- IF Rotala / Diamond were allowed to buy FMR, they would probably give away all the DD work !!

DD12
Posts: 945
Joined: 19:49 Monday 4th July 2016

Re: Worcester's DD usage.

Post by DD12 » 22:19 Wednesday 13th February 2019

bmmoboy wrote:
21:21 Wednesday 13th February 2019
We need decent vehicles - not StreetLites, StreetMax's or StreetDecks!!!!!!!!
I am getting the impression that the latest versions of the Alexander Dennis E200 and E400 are the bee's knees -- --
let's all do the Euro Millions on Friday and buy a few for FMR !!

DD12
Posts: 945
Joined: 19:49 Monday 4th July 2016

Re: Worcester's DD usage.

Post by DD12 » 17:58 Monday 25th February 2019

Very recently, I took a ride upstairs, on the 417 to Ledbury, via Cradley - where there are lots of low tree branches which have previously made this route "out of bounds" to DDs -- -- being a DD nut, I am VERY pleased to see (using the tracking service) that a DD (33401) is again on this service, as I type, but I think it won't be long before the front upper-deck windows need replacing !
(During dark winter hours, the driver will have no chance of seeing these branches !)

https://bustimes.org/vehicles/35107

DD12
Posts: 945
Joined: 19:49 Monday 4th July 2016

Re: Worcester's DD usage.

Post by DD12 » 10:50 Tuesday 26th February 2019

The exact usage of DDs at WR has varied ever since their gradual return in 2002, and the latest variation revealed by the tracking system (and which I would otherwise have not known) is the DD which has been on the AM 365 to Hanley Castle School, then goes (Not In Service) to the Bromsgrove area, for a 144 or 144A, to Worcester.

:)

DD12
Posts: 945
Joined: 19:49 Monday 4th July 2016

Re: Worcester's DD usage.

Post by DD12 » 21:51 Thursday 7th March 2019

I think it's very rare now, but a StreetDeck -- 35159 -- may well be on the 144, entering Birmingham right now as I type, -- currently shown by the bustimes.org tracking system, and this is ironic because the system has an annoying glitch that frequently, falsely claims that a DD has just left Crowngate on the 144 to Birmingham -- -- this frequently happens when a DD is travelling northwards, out of service, to Droitwich or Bromsgrove (to return in service) - even when it goes via "Sixways" !

Matt
Posts: 30
Joined: 22:17 Tuesday 26th June 2018

Re: Worcester's DD usage.

Post by Matt » 22:45 Thursday 7th March 2019

Is it possible that this glitch is a driver programming the ticket machine early for their 144 return journey or maybe this isn’t possible, I know nothing about how the machines work and what restrictions on journey choice/timing they may have, just a theory! :?

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AdamH
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Location: Worcester
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Re: Worcester's DD usage.

Post by AdamH » 08:59 Friday 8th March 2019

With the ticket machines used by First, if a vehicle is out of service the ticket machine should be set to reflect this. That isn’t an option on the ones used by Stagecoach.

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SEVERNLINK
Posts: 36
Joined: 14:44 Thursday 27th October 2016
Location: Bromsgrove

Re: Worcester's DD usage.

Post by SEVERNLINK » 21:15 Saturday 9th March 2019

DD12 wrote:
21:51 Thursday 7th March 2019
I think it's very rare now, but a StreetDeck -- 35159 -- may well be on the 144, entering Birmingham right now as I type, -- currently shown by the bustimes.org tracking system, and this is ironic because the system has an annoying glitch that frequently, falsely claims that a DD has just left Crowngate on the 144 to Birmingham -- -- this frequently happens when a DD is travelling northwards, out of service, to Droitwich or Bromsgrove (to return in service) - even when it goes via "Sixways" !
Saw a StreetDeck on a 144A last Friday evening (1st Mar) in Bromsgrove which was a nice surprise :o

DD12
Posts: 945
Joined: 19:49 Monday 4th July 2016

Re: Worcester's DD usage.

Post by DD12 » 20:08 Friday 5th April 2019

An unusual sight at 7.30 this evening, is that of 32066 parked/ abandoned on the London Road and displaying S3.
The implication is that it's broken down, and the wonders of (partial) tracking records show that 35158 arrived at the school 45 mins late, presumably as a replacement.
- I think it would be better for FMR to have a reliable, extra DD available, rather than lose valuable schools work !

What I think is unusual tonight, is that normally this broken bus would have been towed back to the garage by now -- -- perhaps they are waiting for the new financial year -- -- tomorrow ! :D

DD12
Posts: 945
Joined: 19:49 Monday 4th July 2016

Re: Worcester's DD usage.

Post by DD12 » 21:15 Friday 5th April 2019

ALSO, 32066 was due (I believe) to do the S23 after the S3, and disappointingly the bustimes.org tracking service has not recorded any vehicles on this, this afternoon.

- Any "intelligence" would be appreciated !!

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