Happy New Year Everybody!.
After a great Christmas and a very successful X51 bus service on Christmas Day, attention was turned to preparing 441 for service on New Year’s Day!.
The bus was taken for fuel on the Sunday, then washed on New Year’s Eve.
Volunteer driver Mark Conlon was at the depot early on the first day of 2019, to collect the Mercedes and proceed to Morley railway station, where our route 87 timetable started at 0935.
The timetable was designed to connect with the railway service at Morley, with the photo below showing a Transpennine train making the station call and 441 waiting patiently for connecting passengers.
The bus route then headed for the town centre and on to the White Rose Shopping Centre.
The success of our bus service on one of the quietest days of the year must surely pose the question, is there a market for a bus connection at Morley railway station, could it be added to our local transport network in the future?...
Mark reported some decent passenger numbers and by the time he finished his driving turn, the clicker showed approximately 70 passengers.
I took over the driving at around lunch time, it was a really relaxed timetable and it was great to see lots of familiar faces out on the route, riding and photographing along the way.
Stephen Whiteley joined us in the afternoon, after his morning of bus photography and gave me a break from the cab, driving the 1615 journey and return.
Steve drove the Mercedes impeccably and it was nice for me to ride in the saloon enjoying the ZF gearbox music!.
The core intention of operating our free bus is to provide a service to the people of Morley and district when the regular buses aren’t around-so when our clicker ticked to 133 passengers by the end of NYD, it was satisfying to know that the bus had essentially done its job as intended and provided 133 passengers with a means to access shops and services without having to walk or pay expensive taxi fares.
441 has performed beautifully over the festive period and I’m most proud of the veteran Mercedes, now 23 years old!.
The photo below shows 441 resting with stablemates 577 and 202, after a great week of festive fun!.
Enjoy the photos I managed to snap during the day and many thanks to all involved for making the 87 run again for the first time since 2005!.
Looking forward, we have a busy year ahead, with many running sessions planned to celebrate the Golden Anniversary Year of Black Prince!.