Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Timetable changes, night buses to Calmore & diversions

Velvet A (Eastleigh-Boorley Green) is currently diverted in West End due to a collapsed sewer near Tesco Express.

Leigh Road will be closed towards Eastleigh from Monday 4th January for an unspecified amount of time, meaning diversions to Velvet A (Eastleigh-Boorley Green), and C1/C2/C3 (Eastleigh-Hiltingbury).

Also from 4th January, St Cross Road will be closed. Links on the right and in previous posts detail the planned diversions on Bluestar 1 (City Centre-Winchester) and Stagecoach 69 (Winchester-Fareham). Velvet have advised details of the diversion to routes E1/E2/E3 (Eastleigh-Winchester), which is very kind of them seeing as they only run the E2 on Sundays, which will have a special timetable during the diversion. The E is run by Bluestar the rest of the week and will be following the same diversion as Velvet.

will be withdrawing the B1 (Bitterne-Sholing), B2 (Bitterne-Midanbury), B3 (Bitterne Circular) and 21 (RSH Hospital-Hillyfields) as of 7th February with no replacements currently in sight. On the same day, there will be timetable and some route changes to the 5 (City Centre-Lordshill North), 8 (Lordshill-Townhill Park), 8A (Lordshill-Hedge End Station), 10/10A (Lordshill-Thornhill), and 11A/11C/12A/12C/13 (City Centre-Sholing). This is in addition to the previously announced changes to routes 3 (City Centre-Townhill Park), 4 (City Centre-Totton) and 9 (City Centre-Hightown). Details to follow.

Bluestar will have new timetables from 21st February on routes 2 (City Centre-Fair Oak), 3 (City Centre-Botley), 4 (City Centre-Romsey), 8 (City Centre-Hythe), 9 (City Centre-Waterside), N18 (Leisure World-Hedge End night bus) and F (Eastleigh-Bishops Waltham). Details to follow.

Night buses return to Calmore from 26th February with Bluestar N12.

Monday, 28 December 2009

First lose 14 to Bluestar & 22 to Velvet

There are some big changes coming on several routes which are subsidised by Southampton City Council: First have lost the contracts to run the 14 (City Centre-Bitterne) and 22 (RSH Hospital-Lordshill). The 14 will transfer to Bluestar on 7th February, details of any route/timetable changes are still to be announced. The 22 will transfer to Velvet on 8th February with a new timetable and a curtailed route between the City Centre and Millbrook Tesco, no longer serving RSH Hospital, Upper Shirley, General Hospital, Lordswood or Lordshill.

Velvet will also have new timetables on the A and C from 21st February.

Monday, 21 December 2009

Icy weather & xmas changes

Several routes have been affected by the icy weather the last couple of days. There have been several diversions and cancellations. Full marks to Bluestar and Velvet for using their Facebook pages to give frequent updates on diversions to their routes. Appalling service though from First, whose website details many diversions in Portsmouth but ignores Southampton completely. You can forgive small local operators like Brijan Tours for not having the resources to post frequent updates online (although Velvet manage it somehow with a similar sized network), but a huge multinational like First has absolutely no excuse. I find it quite hard to believe there was no disruption to First's So'ton routes today at all. Even Stagecoach had the sense to use their website to advise that most of their services out of Winchester were disrupted.

A quick reminder that from Xmas Eve to New Year's Day inclusive, all bus routes will be running to different service levels than normal. Full details covering all operators are in the green panel on the right.

Don't forget that from Thursday, Cobden Bridge will be partly closed. First 3 (City Centre - Townhill Park) will be suspended and replaced with the 3B running via Northam Bridge. Unilink U9's (Townhill Park-General Hospital) morning journey will divert via Chartwell Green and Mansbridge, therefore not serving St Denys or Portswood, with the afternoon return journey unaffected.

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Stoneham Lane diversion & forthcoming changes summary

Bluestar 2 is diverted again due to a last-minute closure of Stoneham Lane. Buses are running via Stoneham Way non-stop between the Concorde Club and Swaythling McDonalds.

Night service Unilink U1N (Leisure World-Airport) now has lower fares for journeys starting at of after the University's Highfield Interchange. The new flat fare from that point to the Airport is £1.50.

Bluestar have announced more details of the forthcoming diversions to the 1 (City Centre-Winchester) that start on 4th January.

Some changes to First 26 (Hedge End-Fareham) from 17th January. Details to be announced.

Timetable & possible route changes to First 3 (City Centre-Townhill Park), 4 (City Centre-Totton) and 9 (City Centre-Hightown) from 7th February. Details to be announced. It also looks like the 14 (City Centre-Bitterne) will be withdrawn on the same date.

Bluestar are now posting updates on Twitter.

Sunday, 13 December 2009

Diversions in Bellemoor & Millbrook / Velvet xmas

First 5 (City Centre-Lordshill North) will be diverted in Bellemoor by the closure of Raymond Road on 14th December between 9am and 4pm only. It will run in both directions via Hill Lane and Wilton Road, not serving stops on Raymond Road, St James Road or Upper Shirley Avenue.

First 17 (City Centre-Lordshill) and 21 (RSH Hospital-Hillyfields) are currently affected by resurfacing work on Lower Brownhill Road and Mansel Road West in the northern part of Millbrook. 17 is diverting from The Saints via Windermere Avenue, Wimpson Lane and Romsey Road, rejoining the usual route on Upper Brownhill Road in both directions. First detail a diversion for the 21 which, according to their route map, is the usual route anyway. If you know what's going on with the 21, please get in touch: As usual, First have neglected to say how long this goes on for.

Velvet have announced their plans for Christmas and New Year. A full summary of what all bus companies in the area are doing over the festive period is in the panel on the right.

Friday, 4 December 2009

Cobden Bridge closure, last xmas Bluestars, extra 46 & U9, cheap Velvet

Bluestar have announced the times of the last buses on Christmas Eve and New Years Eve, when services will end around 2000. Click here for the exact times.

have announced what's happening with the 3 (City Centre-Townhill Park) while Cobden Bridge will be closed from 24th December until 10th January. It'll be withdrawn and replaced by the temporary service 3B running from Portswood into town, then via Northam Bridge and Bullar Road to join the usual route at Bitterne Triangle towards Townhill Park. The timetable for the 3B is here. The 3 should resume on 11th January.

Stagecoach have some changes on 4th January. On the 46 (City Centre-Winchester), the 1640 departure from Winchester will have 2 buses as far as Hiltingbury to help ease overcrowding. One of those buses will then continue to the General Hospital. The 69 (Winchester-Fareham) will be diverted due to the roadworks in St Cross for about three months. While Bluestar 1, E1 and E2 will go via Badger Farm, Stagecoach 69 will divert via Bar End and Morestead.

Unilink U9 (Townhill Park-General Hospital) will have a second journey towards the General Hospital starting 11th January. It will leave Townhill Park at 0711, with the current 0731 service continuing to run. Full timetable here. Still only one return journey in the afternoon though.

If you live on a Velvet route and want one of their day tickets for 50p, go to their Facebook page and follow the instructions.

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

St Denys delays, St Cross closures & Salisbury views

First have complained to Southampton City Council about roadworks in St Denys causing delays to the 3 (City Centre - Townhill Park), especially towards town in the mornings. Expect delays.

Bluestar 1 (City Centre - Winchester), E1/E2 (Eastleigh - Winchester), and Stagecoach 69 (Winchester - Fareham) will be affected by the closure of St Cross Road in St Cross for works to the railway bridge from 4th January. Bluestar will be diverting via Badger Farm. Stagecoach haven't advised their plans yet. The work is expected to last three months.

First 72 (City Centre - Gosport) and 80 (City Centre - Fareham) might be getting a new timetable and route from 17th January. It could just be the end of the current Titchfield diversion. Details to be announced.

Wilts & Dorset are consulting on planned changes to their routes serving Salisbury, including the X7 (City Centre - Salisbury), scheduled to take effect in February. Click here for their plans and to give them your views.

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Xmas and New Year buses / Maps

Bluestar & Unilink have announced their plans for Christmas and New Year. Click here for details.

One of the things that can put many people off using buses is that they aren't sure where they go. New at the bottom of this page is a list of bus routes in our region. Press Control and F and then type in the area you want to travel to/from and your browser will jump to the routes serving that area. Next you'll want to know exactly where in that area the buses run and for that you'll need a map. There are several to choose from, unfortunately not all are kept up-to-date. Here's a run-through of the maps you have at your disposal:

Hampshire County Council's county-wide map is out-of-date (June 2009) but useful for planning longer journeys outside the city. Just double-check with the bus operator before travelling.

The county council also have some town-centre maps with more detail covering the following areas in our region: Holbury, Blackfield, Fawley & Calshot, Eastleigh & Hedge End, Hythe, New Forest and Totton. Romsey has its own complete travel guide booklet. Some details on those maps are out-of-date, so double-check with the operator before travelling.

Southampton City Council's map covers all operators, but is out-of-date.

Eastleigh Borough Council's map is so out-of-date that I refuse to link to it. Use the County Council's Eastleigh & Hedge End map instead.

Standards vary hugely between the bus operators when it comes to mapping their routes in our region. Bluestar have an at-a-glance network map plus town centre maps for Southampton, Eastleigh, Hedge End, Totton, Hythe and Winchester. There is also a more detailed map for each individual route. First have this and that map, both uselessly and unprofessionally out-of-date. Unilink have this network map. Velvet uses hi-tech, zoomable Google maps to show us their routes. No maps however from Brijan Tours, Dorset Sprinter, Stagecoach or Wilts & Dorset covering their services in our area.

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Diversions round up / Bluestar on Boxing Day

Bluestar 2 (City Centre-Fair Oak) and F (Eastleigh-Bishops Waltham) are back to normal in Bishopstoke.

First 26 (Hedge End-Fareham) is back to its normal route between Hedge End and Swanwick.

W&D 112 (Hythe-Lymington) is diverted between Dibden Purlieu and Beaulieu with a revised timetable throughout. It should be back to normal in mid-December. Watch this space.

First 72 (City Centre-Gosport) & 80 (City Centre-Fareham) are diverted in Titchfield due to roadworks. Details here.

First 3 (City Centre-Townhill Park) and Unilink U9 (Townhill Park-General Hospital) will be diverted from 24th December due to the partial closure of Cobden Bridge towards Portswood. Details of Unilink's plans here. First haven't yet advised what the 3 will be doing. Normality should resume on 11th January.

Bluestar have announced Boxing Day buses on routes 1 (City Centre-Winchester), 2 (City Centre-Fair Oak), 9 (City Centre-Waterside) and 18 (Millbrook-Thornhill). All will be hourly apart from the 18 which will run half-hourly. Timetable here.

Dorset Sprinter X5 (City Centre-Ringwood) will have a new route and timetable from 2nd January. More details to follow.

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Temporary timetable on W&D 112

Due to road closures in the New Forest, Wilts & Dorset 112 (Hythe-Lymington) will be diverted and running to a temporary timetable from 9th November.

In other news, Bluestar have announced some intended timetable changes planned for February, with a view to guage public reaction. The most drastic proposal is to cut the frequency of Bluestar 3 (Southampton-Botley) to hourly outside the rush hours. You can see details of their other proposals and put your comment to Bluestar here.

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Improvements to Velvet route C

Starting Sunday November 1st, Velvet route C expands to provide better connections between Valley Park and Eastleigh on C3. C2 is rerouted to provide a more direct service to Hiltingbury. The overall frequency to Velmore and Hiltingbury is increased to 3 buses an hour weekday daytimes. Full details here.

Stagecoach C1 ends on Sunday 25th October to be replaced by Sunday services on Velvet C1 from 1st November.

Velvet also take over Sunday services on the E2 (Eastleigh-Winchester) from Stagecoach on 1st November, with some timetable changes, yet to be announced. The Monday-Saturday Bluestar E service is unaffected.

High Street in Southampton City Centre will be closed in both directions on Monday 19th, Tuesday 20th and Wednesday 21st October 2009. Bluestar Citylink and Uni-link U1 and U6 will run via Orchard Place, Queensway and Bernard Street instead of via Town Quay and High Street in both directions. Please use the stops on Queensway instead. Stops at High Street and Briton Street will not be served during this time

Thursday, 8 October 2009

Swaythling: Stoneham Lane closed from Monday

Stoneham Lane in Swaythling will be closed for drainage works from Monday 12 October for 4 weeks. This means that Bluestar 2 will run via the M27 junction and Stoneham Way. It will not be able to serve any stops on Stoneham Lane between the Concorde Club and Swaythling McDonalds.

Stagecoach are rumoured to be no longer running the C1 (Eastleigh-Hiltingbury) and E2 (Eastleigh-Winchester) Sunday services after 25th October. It's not yet clear what, if any, replacements will be provided.

Bluestar have mentioned an additional journey on Bluestar 2 between Eastleigh and Fair Oak. This will probably start on 2nd November, but is still to be confirmed.

Monday, 5 October 2009

Diversion in Boorley Green / Hythe back to normal

Velvet A is diverted in Boorley Green from tomorrow. Oatlands Road will be shut for two days, from Tuesday 6th October. Velvet A will not be able to serve the Maddoxford Lane stop all day Tuesday and Wednesday.

The road closures in Hythe are now finished, meaning that Bluestar 8, 9, H1, H2 and H3 are all back to their normal routes.

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Diversions in Hythe & Bishopstoke / New timetables & ticket restrictions on Unilink

The long awaited Bishopstoke diversion to Bluestar 2 and F gets underway tomorrow. During this time, Bluestar 2 will not be able to serve Spring Lane, Hamilton Road or Sedgewick Road. Instead, it will run via Church Road and Stoke Park Road. The bus stops on Spring Lane and Sedgewick Road will be closed.

Also starting tomorrow are some road closures in Hythe that mean diversions on Bluestar 8, 9, H1, H2 and H3. Bluestar 8 & 9 will not be able to serve the Ferry Yard, New Road or South Street. Buses will pick up and drop off instead at Jones Lane/Brinton Lane, running out of Hythe via West Street. Baby Bluestar H1, H2 & H3 will use the Ferry Yard as normal but will run in and out of Hythe via South Street.

Unilink are no longer accepting Bluestar's day and week tickets. 30-day and 90-day Bluestar Freedom tickets can however still be used on Unilink.

There are also new timetables on Unilink taking effect today. More buses on U1 now run into Eastleigh. U6 now runs later in the evenings.

Thursday, 17 September 2009

Brijan timetable changes from 5th October

There are changes to the following Brijan Tours services from 5th October:

7 Southampton - Bishops Waltham
The 0718 from Bishops Waltham to Southampton is withdrawn.
The 0720 from Southampton to Bishops Waltham will now leave at 0715.
The 1740 (weekdays only) from Southampton to Bishops Waltham is withdrawn.

17 Bishops Waltham - Petersfield
The 1757 from Bishops Waltham to Corhampton will no longer run.
The 0728 from Corhampton to Bishops Waltham is also withdrawn.

Monday, 7 September 2009

Unilink U1 and U6 divert in Swaythling Thursday-Saturday

Wessex Lane in Swaythling will be closed on Thursday, Friday and Saturday this week, causing diversions on Unilink U1 and U6. U1 will run from Wide Lane through Swaythling Arch, along High Road and Burgess Road to join the usual route at the junction with Langhorn Road. U6 won't be running around the Wessex Lane loop but will stop at Swaythling McDonalds (towards the General Hospital) or opposite (towards town).

Friday, 4 September 2009

Minor change to early mornings on Velvet C1

From Monday 7th September, the 0715 Velvet C1 service from Eastleigh Bus Station to Barton Peveril College via Chandlers Ford, Hiltingbury & Valley Park will run ten minutes earlier, now departing Eastleigh at 0705. New timetable here.

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Strikes off & diversions delayed

The strikes planned on Bluestar are off for now, but may go ahead at a later date.

The Bishopstoke diversions to Bluestar 2 are now delayed until 25th September.

Don't forget next Monday sees the start of the new X5 between Southampton and Ringwood, operated by Dorset Sprinter.

Thursday, 27 August 2009

All buses free in Southampton city this weekend / Bluestar strike next Thursday

Travel will be free on ALL buses within the City of Southampton on Saturday and Sunday from start of service until 6pm, regardless of operator. It's paid for by Southampton City Council and is in aid of the 9 cruise liners festival. You will still need to tell the driver where you're going and be issued with a free ticket. This is so that the bus companies can tell the council how many have travelled on each bus. Bluestar/Unilink and First have published lists of where on their routes you will be able to travel for free. Velvet's only route in the city is the A, which will be free from Haskins Garden Centre on Mansbridge Road to the Airport. No mention from the minor operators Wilts & Dorset, Stagecoach and Brijan Tours, so best to check with them before travelling to make sure they're free. Links to their websites are in the panel on the right, below the current diversions.

London Road in the city centre will be closed from 1500 on Sunday and all day on Bank Holiday Monday. Bluestar 1 & 2 and Unilink U1 & U2 will divert via Brunswick Place and Dorset Street. First 7 will also be affected, but they haven't bothered to advise where that will be diverting.

Bluestar have advised of possible strike action by the RMT on Thursday 3rd September. They say they will be drafting extra drivers in from elsewhere to try and run a full service. Unilink will not be affected.

A reminder that Unilink U1 will have a new timetable as of 27th September.

Looks like some night buses will be transferring to Unilink from 2nd October. A U1N service is planned to run on Friday and Saturday nights between Leisure World and the Airport.

Brijan Tours will have new timetables on the 7 (Southampton-Bishops Waltham) and 17 (Bishops Waltham-Petersfield) from 4th October. More details when they are released.

Monday, 24 August 2009

Free travel within the city this weekend!

You'll be able to travel for free on Saturday and Sunday before 6pm on Bluestar and Unilink within Southampton's city boundary. Their website mentions funding from Southampton City Council, but the council's website has no information and neither do First, so it looks like First (and the others) will still be charging on those days.

Velvet have confirmed a Sunday service on their routes for Bank Holiday Monday 31st August, which means Stagecoach running the A and C1. Bluestar and Unilink have also confirmed a Sunday service, as have Wilts & Dorset. First's website still mentions only the May bank holiday - they had a Sunday service then so I presume they'll do that on Monday too - their website really is appallingly unprofessional considering the size of the company behind it. Stagecoach aren't very clear on their website either, but thanks to Velvet, we know they'll be running a Sunday service too. Brijan Tours won't be running as they don't have a Sunday service.

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Southampton bus round-up

The Bishopstoke roadworks originally programmed to start on 10 August are now expected to start on 24 August, and should last for about 4 months. During this time, Bluestar 2 will not be able to serve Spring Lane, Hamilton Road or Sedgewick Road. Instead, it will run via Church Road and Stoke Park Road. The bus stops on Spring Lane and Sedgewick Road will be closed.

First revamp their Fareham and Gosport routes on 30th August. For us that means the 78 and 79 disappear to be replaced by an increased frequency on the 80, which will be rerouted to run via Woolston instead of Bitterne. There will also be a new timetable on the 72.

Do The Docks for free on 30th August.

Bank holiday 31st August: Sunday service on Bluestar & Unilink.

The new X5 Southampton-Ringwood operated by Dorset Sprinter (Travel Guest) starts on 7th September. Connections to Bournemouth on service X55 from Ringwood.

Timetable changes to Unilink U1 and U6 on 27th September.

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Bishopstoke back to normal... for now

BlueStar have advised that the 2 and F are now back to their normal routes in Bishopstoke after the recent roadworks ended early. Another diversion comes into force on 10th August though. Details a few posts below.

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Timetable changes and diversions announced

Wilts and Dorset will have new timetables on the following routes:

34 Eastleigh-Romsey-Salisbury from 1st September
112 Hythe-Beaulieu-Lymington from 3rd September

More details when the new timetables are published.

Velvet C1 will be affected by the closure of Flexford Road between Hiltingbury and Valley Park on Saturday 1st August only. It will run as normal between Eastleigh and Hiltingbury but will then divert via Hursley Road and Bournemouth Road directly to Asda. It won't be able to serve Valley Park, which will have this free replacement bus.

Velvet C2 is being diverted by the closure of Park Road in Chandlers Ford for about 2 weeks. In both directions it is running as normal until Sutherlands Way, then it turns left and runs via Hursley Road and Valley Road, resuming its normal route at the junction of Valley Road and Park Road. Should end 12th August. There is a temporary bus stop at the bottom of Sutherlands Way to replace the stop at the Monks Brook.

First 72 will be diverted in Gosport due to the closure of Browndown Road from 3rd August. From Southampton it will run via Privett Road, Gomer Lane, turn around at Stokes Bay Road roundabout, Gomer Lane and Privett Road towards Gosport. The diversion will be in both directions until about 14th September.

Stagecoach 63 will not be serving Shawford or Compton Street for 3 months from 17th August due to the closure of Shawford Road. It will instead run directly between Badger Farm and Twyford.

Thursday, 23 July 2009

First publish new timetables & BlueStar confirm diversion

BlueStar have confirmed that the diversions in Bishopstoke from Monday 27th July will also affect BabyBlueStar F. Until 10th August from Eastleigh, it will run via Bishopstoke Road, Fair Oak Road and Sayers Road, rejoining the normal route on Hamilton Road. After 10th August, the F will probably go from Eastleigh via Bishopstoke Road, Riverside, Church Road, Stoke Park Road, round the Stoke Common loop and then along Underwood Road towards Fair Oak. Diversions after 10th August are still to be confirmed, so watch this space or follow Bluestar's Facebook page. They're not the only local operator to make the most of technology: Velvet are on Facebook and Twitter.

First have put their new timetables online. They take effect on the 9s, 10s, 16s and 17s plus the new 1s on Sunday 26th July. A summary of the changes is a couple of posts below. Here are a few more details:

1/1A City Centre-Weston
Replacing the 17/17A on this part of the route. Victoria Road and Jurds Lake Way are cut down to 2 weekday daytime buses and just 1 Saturday daytime bus an hour on the 1A (was 3 an hour on the 17A), while Archery Road and Weston Grove Road jump up to 4 an hour on the 1 (was 3 an hour on the 17). Combined Saturday daytime frequency drops from 10 to 12 minutes. Sunday service stays more or less the same, half hourly 1 throughout, with the last bus from town 30 mins later than before at 2347.

9/9A City Centre-Thornhill
Extended to Hightown. Fewer buses for Chessel Avenue, served only by the 9A every 20 minutes between approximately 1000 and 1500 Mon-Sat. 9 operates via Bitterne Road West outside those hours. Evening services are introduced, meaning the last bus from town is now at 2203Mon-Sat/2208Sun (was 1920Mon-Sat/1708 Sun).

10/10A Lordshill-City Centre-Thornhill
No more through services to Harefield, now served by the later running 9. Minor changes to times. 10A to Thornhill stops running earlier, with last bus via North East Road leaving town at 1802MF/1818Sat/1654Sun (was 1913Mon-Sat/1654Sun).

16 City Centre-Hamble
16A City Centre-Hamble-Hedge End

Route change in City Centre. No major changes to times. 2134 from City Centre to Hamble no longer runs on Saturdays, leaving a 2 hour gap before the last bus at 2234.

17/17A City Centre-Lordshill
No longer runs to Weston, replaced by 1/1A. Minor changes to times. Sunday daytimes see an increase from 2 to 3 buses an hour (every 40 minutes on each route). Last 17 to Lordshill via Mansell Road West and Lower Brownhill Road now leaves town at 1830MF/1832Sat (was 1925MF/1926Sat) with no change on Sundays. The last Sunday bus on the 17A is now 28 minutes later at 2331.

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Forthcoming diversions in Bishopstoke

BlueStar 2 and BabyBlueStar F will be affected by road closures in Bishopstoke for a few months from Monday 27th July. First of all Riverside and Spring Lane won't be usable, so buses will divert via Fair Oak Road, Sayers Road and Hamilton Road to Sedgwick Road. That ends on 10th August, when buses will not be able to use Spring Lane, Hamilton Road or Sedgwick Road - from Eastleigh the route will be Bishopstoke Road, Riverside and Church Road joining the usual route on Stoke Park Road. Both diversions will be in both directions. The BlueStar webpage doesn't actually mention route F in the diversion, but it uses the affected roads, so I think it's safe to assume it will be diverted too. All should be back to normal around 10th October.

I've checked First's website again to see if the new timetables taking effect on Sunday (see below) have been published - and they haven't. I'm also not impressed that First don't provide an e-mail address on which to contact them, only a long form asking for lots of personal information. Anyone would think they don't want potential customers to approach them with questions and comments.

Monday, 20 July 2009

Changes to First 9s, 10s, 16s & 17s this Sunday

First have announced some big changes taking effect on Sunday 26th July:

9 City Centre-Thornhill
Route 9 will no longer continue as the 10 when it arrives in Thornhill. It will instead continue to Hightown, presumably to compete with Bluestar 18. Chessel Avenue will see a reduction in service: it will be no longer be served during the rush hours or in the evenings. The rest of the time, only certain journeys, numbered 9A, will serve Chessel Avenue. It's not yet clear how often the 9A will run - my guess is hourly because the combined 9/9A daytime frequency will remain every 20 minutes. A limited evening service on the 9 is to be introduced - current last bus from the City Centre is at 1920 Mon-Sat. More when the timetable appears online.

10/10A Lordshill-City Centre-Thornhill
Route 10 will no longer continue as the 9 when it arrives in Thornhill. Instead it will just turn around at Fairfax Court. 10E will be withdrawn, leaving Harefield to the new evening buses on the 9. The daytime 10/10A frequency will remain every 10 minutes. More when the timetable appears online.

16 City Centre-Hamble
16A City Centre-Hamble-Hedge End
Routes 16/16A will be rerouted in the City Centre. Instead of serving Queensway, they will now run from Vincents Walk via Hanover Buildings, Bargate Street, West Quay and Castle Way. Times are not expected to change.

17/17A Lordshill-City Centre-Weston
Routes 17/17A will stop running to Weston after goodness knows how many years. They will instead only run between the City Centre and Lordshill. In town, they will run in a circle from Central Station via Portland Terrace and West Quay, Bargate Street, Hanover Buildings, Vincents Walk, Pound Tree Road and back out towards Shirley via the current route along Above Bar Street. 17E is withdrawn, expected to be replaced by 17A in the evenings. The historic last 17A to Weston leaves the City Centre at 2340 on Saturday night.

1/1A City Centre-Weston
This is what replaces the part of the 17/17A being withdrawn. 1 will use the current 17 route via Weston Grove Road and Archery Road and 1A will replace the 17A via Victoria Road and Jurds Lake Way. Still every 10 minutes in the daytime. It's not yet clear what the evening service will look like. More details when the timetable appears online.

The above all take effect on Sunday 26th July. And First haven't yet put the new timetables online. The words 'piss up' and 'brewery' spring to mind.

Sunday, 19 July 2009

New bus services, changes to First routes to Fareham and diversions in Chandlers Ford

Velvet C1/C2 will be diverted in Chandlers Ford from 27th July. Bodycoats Road will be closed near the junction with Oakmount Road. Buses will divert via Craven Road and Hillcrest Avenue, serving temporary bus stops in those roads. This will also affect the Sunday C1 operated by Stagecoach. The diversion is expected to last until around 7th September.

All current diversions are now displayed in the panel on the right, to save you scrolling through several previous posts to see which ones are still active.

In other news, First plan to amend the routes and times of some of their Fareham services, including the 72 and 80 to Southampton as of 30th August 2009. The 78 and 79 may be withdrawn and replaced with new services. More details to follow.

Travelguest plan to run the X5 between Southampton and Ringwood as of 7th September 2009. It will run to what looks like the same route as the defunct Velvet 300 via Millbrook Roundabout, Picket Post and Poulner. There will probably be 4 journeys a day Monday to Saturday excluding public holidays. Details to be confirmed.

Monday, 6 July 2009


Southampton's buses are confusing. There are more companies than before operating them and the routes and timetables change more often than ever before. To keep up with them all, you need to check with the relevant company and/or council regularly. But we don't all have time for that. That's where this page comes in. It will be updated whenever any changes to Southampton's buses are announced, regardless of which service is affected.

I have to admit the blog is mainly inspired by First, who have two maps of their Southampton routes on their website, both of them out of date. A newcomer to our city would rightly be confused. Even Southampton City Council's public transport map (on their website, link on the right) is inaccurate.

To get the blog running, let's have a quick summary of the most recent changes to bus services in Southampton:

First fiddled with some of their routes on May 4th, including cuts to the 4, 5 and 14A. A new route, the 7A, is a part-time hourly extension of the 7 from Swaythling to Millbrook Tesco via General Hospital and Shirley. First's website makes it difficult to post links to individual timetables, not helped by the fact that you also have to wade through lists of Portsmouth services to find the one you want. Did I mention their maps are out of date? It really is quite shoddy.

As of June 14th, BlueStar's day and season tickets are now also valid for travel on the UniLink network. BlueStar tickets cannot however be purchased on board UniLink buses.

Also on June 14th, there were timetable changes to BlueStar 1, BlueStar 2 (short journeys between Eastleigh and Fair Oak withdrawn), BlueStar 3, BlueStar 4, BlueStar 8, BlueStar 9 and BlueStar 18 as well as First 26, 72, 78, 79 and 80. BabyBlueStar F is withdrawn on Sundays, no longer serving Marwell Zoo (despite what the timetable says) and is replaced by this seasonal free bus.

On 20th June, the New Forest Tour started running for the summer. Integrated ticketing is available from Southampton City Centre on Wilts & Dorset 56 & 56A to Lyndhurst.

From 2nd July, UniLink U9 only has one journey a day in each direction, weekdays only.

Every weekend until the end of August, train tickets to Brockenhurst can be used on Wilts & Dorset 56 for free travel to and from Lyndhurst.

If you live in Eastleigh, Velmore, Chandlers Ford or Hiltingbury, Hampshire County Council are running a consultation as they decide how to replace the C1 and C2 services, which will soon be changed. Take part and influence how the council subsidises buses in your area.

Diversions appear in the panel on the right.