Thursday, 1 November 2018

W1 cut back to Chilworth / Christmas Day buses


Wheelers W1 is being cut back from 5th November, to only run between Southampton and Chilworth. It stopped running at weekends in September last year. Now it will no longer run to Romsey. New timetable here.

11th November sees changes to several Bluestar routes, including the extension of the 17 to Weston and Adanac Park. Full detail here of the changes to routes, 4, 5, 8, 9, 11, 12, 16, 17 and 18.

Christmas bus service plans are slowly being released. Services that will be operating on Christmas Day include Bluestar 1 and 18 and More M1/M2. More as details are confirmed.


There's a change to First Weymouth 2 from 6th Jan. Not yet clear what it is, but we'll let you know as soon as details are out.


170 comments:

  1. I'm surprised Bluestar still haven't put up the new timetables for the 17 between Southampton City Centre and Weston

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  2. The new timetable for Bluestar 17 has been on their website for weeks now.If you are referring to roadside publicity it's a wee bit early and will more than likely be done mid next week.

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  3. Insider reports that the Christmas day 1 service will be going through Portswood.

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  5. City Red 11 every 5 mins from November 5th.

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    1. In your dreams troll.

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    2. It's just going to get slaughtered when the 17 starts, and will just make Firsts losses even bigger, so yet another complete waste of resources from unimaginative Worst group.

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    3. Traveline lists new timetables for the First 11 starting 5/11 and 24/12. They all give a day time service unchanged at 8 bus an hour. I haven't checked peak hour or evenings / weekends.

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    4. No 5 minute frequency anywhere. Saturdays have 10 minute frequency, Sundays are 15. Even peak hours maintain the standard frequency.

      The only change is a temporary re-routing for the Christmas market.

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    5. Stop listening to trolls Alice.

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    7. Claudio if you check First Southampton Facebook you will see City Red 11 is in fact every 5 mins now.

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    10. A couple of First Solent Streetlites are on loan to enable to increased frequency.

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    11. They now have Southampton Fleet Names on them

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  6. If every 5 minutes as suggested there will be plenty of empty buses running together.Even at the present frequency most of the day they run in pairs

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  7. First 11 & others are already meant to be fairly frequent. But trying to retaliate by "supposedly" ramping up to every 5 mins won't achieve anything. All it will do is clog up the already congested route into town with even more dare I say, mainly empty vehicles?

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  8. Xelabus have announced their Christmas and new Year services with NO Bitterne Hoppa and X12 between Christmas and New Year.

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    1. Other services running a Saturday service or normal weekday times with the X5 not running either.

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  9. 7 days to go till Weston gets a decent bus service at long ,long last!

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    1. Never thought a bus company would invoke Godwin's Law but there we are :D

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    2. You wouldn't get employed by First.

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  11. I would love to work for First Bus their supervisors All ways look after the Drivers.

    But at Bluestae the supervisors are no where to be seen and are All ways at Barton Park

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    1. You're a fine advertisement for First and their principles.

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    2. Reece, you may well get a job there, with the numbers queuing up to join the blues.

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    3. Funny enough you say that mate, I hope to join First Bus tbh

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    4. You best hurry up Reece, they won't be around too long!

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    5. There's All ways Hoeford lol

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  12. New routes are in the pipeline for First.

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    1. Southampton to Oblivion, via Hell?

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    2. Or is that the sewerage pipeline? First do not have the patience or bank account to do new routes. They are not even good at copying other people's routes! Wonder who they will get to drive these new routes. Oh yeah, bet they have a massive queue of drivers who can't wait to join them on worse pay and conditions. Those adverts aimed at Blue Star drivers will go down in local history as their worst joke of all time.

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    3. Who wouldnt want to work for first the best thing is you can run late if you want and you can annoy your passengers as much as you like and you can skive with your bus and not show up first seem to do this

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  13. The change to Weymouth service 2 from 6 January is to make minor adjustments to intermediate running times, plus the 2328 Seven Acres to Weymouth journey will now run via Preston Road and Overcombe instead of Littlemoor. This is to allow passengers needing to return to the lower end of Preston Road and Overcpmbe to get home albeit on a somewhat circuitous route and reinstates a facility that existed in the past when service 4 is reduced for the winter.
    Ken - Traveline Dorset

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  14. Do we know why they've extended the 17 to Adanac Park when it was originally too unprofitable for First to go that far?

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  15. Adanac Park is to be a Park and Ride facility for those working at the General Hospital

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    1. Also can be used by the General Public but is the 17 stopping by where First Route 1 used to stop at?

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    2. It's stopping at the only stop. Right opposite the pub.

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  16. Have you seen Firsts facebook post?

    It seems that all the rubbish about the 11 running every 5 minutes is true, they must be really scares of the 17 to throw money away like that.

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    1. If this is so it is certainly not reflected in what they show or what Traveline South West is showing

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    2. I am really quite confused by it. They aren't saying that 5-minute frequency is going to happen, they're saying it's already happening - which does seem to go against what I can see on Traveline (their own website just says "at frequent intervals" and their journey planner shows every 7/8.

      I can only assume they are putting on extra vehicles on top of the timetable to make it. Or lying through their teeth. Either way, they are rattled.

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    3. The troll is back again spewing nonsense about First 11 which will soon be a thing of the past once Bluestar get to work in Weston.

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    4. Not a troll spewing nonsense for once, First put on their Facebook page that the 11 runs up to every 5 minutes. They might want to tell their timetables


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    5. Alice H-when did First post this on their FB page as I see no mention whatsoever?

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    6. I also see no mention of it in looking just now.Also no mention of the 11 being now every 5 minutes,on their timetable site or on Traveline,although it would seem this is so by reports.It would seem that First are just adding costs to the operation of the route,which in the end can't do much good

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    7. Beginning to wonder if Alice H has been sucked in by the troll.

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    8. Nope, it is on the First Southampton page that CityRed 11 is now every 5 minutes.

      It was posted at 1142 on 07 November. The link is:

      https://www.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10155893056307897&id=206942307896

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    9. I'd never get sucked in by trolls! Although I was beginning to wonder if I'd imagined it...

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  17. As confirmed by a couple of drivers on my travels back home the 11 is indeed every 5 minutes

    Hence the reason for seeing Standard Streetlites on Southampton Routes

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    1. Who needs a streetlite dinky single decker vehicle when Bluestar are offering double deckers and cross city connections.

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    2. The wood effect flooring and leather seating makes the City Red the more appealing way to travel for me.

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    3. ...and crushed in on a packed dinky single deck bus...No wait...you`ll have the bus to yourself when Bluestar get going haha.

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    4. Wood effect flooring and leather seats make it more appealing? Are you for real? Crikey, they will be finding wood chip wallpaper back in fashion next! Bet you also love that wonderful computer voice too? I think you need to have a ride on a blue bus, to see how the professionals do things. They didn't win National large bus operator of the year, the other day, for nothing you know!

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    5. I don't know why some commentators imagine that everyone in Weston will switch to Bluesar 17 when it gets going.This won't happen and most will board the first bus that comes along if travelling between Weston and City or vice versa irrespective of the single or return fare.Concessionary pass holders in the main won't choose between one operator or the other,just pleased to board the first bus that comes along,particularly now Winter approaches.I wonder whether we will now see the introduction of some stupid priced tickets at give away prices whilst others in areas where there is little or no competetion have to pay high fares.

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  18. Weston is the last remaining area where First uniquely operate and that is profitable enough to supply a frequent service, so it's understandable that they will want to protect it, but suddenly increasing the frequency won't work. They tried it in Townhill Park a few years ago and Millbrook recently and both times they have brought the frequency back down when realising it wasn't working. In both places, Bluestar didn't wither away as First hoped, surely proving that over-saturation simply doesn't work in the long term. Add in to the mix the fact that First are having to borrow resources from another depot to provide this, and from what others have said manipulate a loophole in the definition of 'frequent intervals' for other services to reduce their PSV in order to avoid a nasty slap on the wrist, shows how weak a position they are really in.

    Bluestar will not suddenly leave Weston if after a few months things don't go as well for them as they would like, and that's the difference between Bluestar and First. First are too impatient and don't have the finances to fully commit to their attacks; take their disastrous attempt at duplicating the whole 18 route with the 2, which lasted around 3 months. First will have chucked a lot of money down the drain before Bluestar consider retreating.

    One more thing I noticed that made me laugh is in their Facebook advert they list 'single deck' vehicles as a benefit to using their services. This may benefit a small minority but to most this simply comes across as a boast that their buses have a lower capacity, which is downright incompetent. The fact also that you can only go as far as the City Centre on the 11 in my view makes theirs the inferior product in Weston from 11 November, even with their sudden "investment" in frequency.

    No doubt that this post will be shot down as yet another "Anti-First" post etc but given the behaviour of both operators over the last couple of years, I think it's fair cop.

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    1. "and from what others have said manipulate a loophole in the definition of 'frequent intervals' for other services to reduce their PSV in order to avoid a nasty slap on the wrist, shows how weak a position they are really in."

      Hardly a loophole, the entire point and definition of a frequent interval registration service is that you don't need to specifiy the exact times to the TC, you just run a frequent service. The clue is surely in the name.

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    1. If you haven't seen the "Bus Wars"(Facing south) documentary on You Tube yet which was originally aired on ITV then you might want to,it shows the tricks played by operators including one which had empty buses on one route waiting for the competitor to come in view before putting the bus in service right in front of the competitors bus.

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    3. You are correct those that want to go cross City will I presume wait for the 17.However those boarding between Weston and City and vice versa unless they have a season ticket with a particular operator,will board the first bus that comes along-One things for sure once Bluestar do something they stick to it thick or thin and ride the storm out.I also have not seen any mention by first of their 2 going to a 10 minute frequency,however if so I presume this helps to slightly reduce the operating costs on bolstering their 11 to an unworkable 5 minute headway.Just more empty buses to look at passing by.I would also imagine the MP's for Itchen and Test would not be remotely interested in what each operator does.Royston Smith was a councellor in Southampton once for Harefield and as such when First started to cut or keep changeing service on Harefield,did not notice Him do much about it,or fight to keep a slightly better service

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    5. Well in the case of Royston Smith it was His party that way back in time created the mess that some areas are now in without any present hope of recovery so I don't see Him sharing your concerns

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    6. The frequency of the 2 has not changed.

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  20. Outcome of the Hants transport review, inc. cuts to subsidised services, bus passes etc.

    https://democracy.hants.gov.uk/documents/s24834/Report.pdf

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    1. Interesting reading-The start of the end for many in the distant future I would suspect

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    2. Tables are here.

      https://democracy.hants.gov.uk/documents/s24835/App%201.pdf

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    3. Quick overview of stuff from this area:
      E1 and E2 are going to be heavily decimated.
      5 (Romsey-Eastleigh) will be run commercially.
      T3 and T4 lose the Saturday services and the H1/H2 lose peak services.
      More 112 also loses a Saturday service

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    4. Yes. Plenty to look forward too next year for potential bus users

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    6. Also Bluestar 35 and 39 lose their Saturday services.

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    7. Well any intending passenger for service 39 won't miss the Saturday service as there isn't one at present,so nothing lost

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    8. They mean the 36 - no changes to the 39.

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    9. I did indeed mean the 36 -- a slip of the finger!

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  21. Any thoughts on the new Bluestar site?

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    1. Is there going to be a new Bluestar site?

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    2. Eventually maybe, but nothing anytime soon.

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    4. You would have thought for a new look site they would have updated Solent Go card information.Emsworth & District?

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    1. Nice busy City Red 11s today. Shame about the empty Bluestar double decks.

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    2. More than likely the majority of people in the Weston area are unaware at present that Bluestar now have a presence there.Once they cotton on I'm sure the situation will change somewhat.Nice however to note red 11 was busy,as as days go by from now on First will need every passenger they can get to support it,and even if just one uses a Bluestar it's a loss to First.The odd one here and there useing Bluestar soon mounts up over time to hundreds and just weakens the service.When the 17 first started between City and Lordshill that was quiet too but soon put deep inroads into First 3 which is still busy,but nowhere near as so before the 17 came along.

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    3. I have observed exactly the opposite today. Busy blues and quiet reds. The blue drivers are stopping at every stop, to encourage punters aboard. Looks like they have been well trained in what to do!

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    4. Many passengers will already have passes for First and when those expire that is when Bluestar could get pretty busy.

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    5. It's sad the Bluestar are willing to put many First drivers jobs at risk for there own greed.

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    6. Bluestar have ben actively recruiting bus drivers so they could just jump ship and work for the best(Bluestar)instead.

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    7. If the drivers remaining at First can't see the writing on the wall, it is entirely their own fault! Any ordinary Joe can see where it is all going, and they still have ample opportunity to make an application elsewhere. Yes, there does look a strong possibility that there will be a sudden announcement by First, that they will pull out at some point in 2019, and yes, Blue Star have strong contingency plans for that happening, but it's all some time away yet in my opinion.

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    8. Bluestar offer a poor employee benefits package in comparison TO First.

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    9. If you want to travel on trains occasionally, then maybe you are right, but most people just want top dollar for what they do, day to day, and paid breaks, rather than the stingy wheel turning time contracts that I understand First offer.

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  23. A slight error there.They have forgotten to mention Velvet

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    1. If you are thinking of the same Velvet as I am, the firm folded several years ago, and tht will be why it doesn't appear in Claudio's list.

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    2. You obviously don't get the point of Me replying to Claudio's in stating forgotten to mention Velvet. My reply has gone completly over your head.

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  24. I find it strange that the First 11 is now every 5 minutes but the timetable displays and on the website still display the service as every 7-8 minutes.

    And more strange the Traffic Commionsier has now been made aware of any of the changes as 2 months notice is supposed to be given

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    1. If a service runs every 10 minutes or better it will simply be registered as a frequent service, therefore a change from every 7/8 minutes to every 5 minutes doesn't require a change to the registration.

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    1. First like to allow there employees to have the festive season with there loved ones.

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    2. Oh and what about Muslim and Jehover drivers who don`t celebrate Christmas?

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    3. More a First commercial decission rather than letting them have the festive season with their loved ones

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    4. I wouldn’t be surprised if First ran this Xmas.. possibly the 11 and maybe the 3.

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    6. Please remember that single people living alone can find Christmas Day very challenging.

      When we had Christmas day trains from Waterloo, my great Uncle always swapped shifts with a family man so he go go to work at Waterloo on Christmas day and have a Christmas lunch in the staff canteen. Far more fun than sitting alone in his room.

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    7. More have announced their Christmas times, and it is just as expected. I think the Christmas Day services are starting earlier and finishing later than last year though.

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    9. Ah, fair enough. I don't use it on Christmas Day.

      However, I do on New Year's Day, and from last/this year's experience, the later M1s can get very busy so I hope they consider a double decker or a duplicate for certain journeys (such as those between 6 and 7...assuming Yellows finish the 3 at 6pm again). Unlikely though..

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  26. The new Sunday service on the Bluestar 11 seemed quite busy but the timetable cases at stops in West Totton hadn`t been changed to show a Sunday service and people seemed surprised to see it running so perhaps more publicity needed.

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    1. Sorry, the rain slowed us down. It is being done asap

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    3. Two old ladies I saw seemed surprised but what you have to remember is that not everyone is online and checking the Bluestar website or social media,so wouldn`t know as the Echo haven`t said a word and Bluestar don`t put info of changes up in their vehicles as bus companies always used to.

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    5. Need the residents of West Totton to do their bit and support the 11 on Sunday`s otherwise don`t moan if you never have a Sunday service ever again.

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    6. Claudio-Some drivers will spread the news and others won`t.

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    7. Would be good if there was a bus shelter at the Morrison`s bus stop in Totton.

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    8. You need to nag the local council about bus shelters as they have been nothing to do with bus organisations for decades!

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  27. Just found out that Xelabus have yet more contracts with the failure of Airlynx over the weekend. It appears Xela are moving more and more into contract services. They have had their first bus delivered with seat belts and a Cheetah coach so they are moving into different markets!

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    1. A new company named xelacoach commenced on 18th october 2018.maybe in response to Airlynx going out of business.the Traffic Commisioner report on Airlynx about 11th October 2018 was pretty scathing and stated the operation was rotten to the core

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    2. Thank goodness Bluestar have someone serious about running a decent service, as opposition for the future!

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  28. Any chance of Bluestar putting up the Bluestar 17 timetable at Terminus Terrace?

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    1. E-mail them at managersmailbox@bluestarbus.co.uk

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  29. I noticed that Yellow buses registered alterations to all their main routes yesterday for commencement 6 January. I guess we have to wait as to what this means; minor rush hour adjustments or more substantial.

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    2. Just proves with regular changes to Yellow services in recent times that many who now run it are not very competent in running it.

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    3. Whilst i do enjoy reading all the speculation, wait until VOSA publishes everything. I have all the registrations but it will take some time to release to Traveline as i'm not planning on releasing anything until I can release everything, so likely to be at the end of November.
      Ken Traveline

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    5. Claudio - Bearing in mind the current frequency of the 1 through Lower Parkstone and Ashley Cross is every 30 minutes (hourly on Sunday) I would hardly describe your predicted increase to every 10 minutes as slight as you do. I suspect you meant to say that you believe Yellows will return to their previous frequency of every 10 minutes between Bournemouth and Poole, with all buses now running as route 1, resulting in withdrawal of the 1c variation.

      As always Claudio, you are jumping ahead and speculating wildly. Which is why this site is trusted for giving information on changes to buses in the Solent area, and your site is, to put it bluntly and with the greatest of respect, not.

      I will agree with you however with regards to the constantly changing Yellows. It crosses me big time too!

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    7. Mark you are a bully. Don’t we speculate all sometimes? Claudio was saying he read the VOSA files and found the information. He was wrong however about service 1C, it wont be withdrawn. It is just not on the changes...
      You need to retreat yourself of making this harsh comments. At the end of the day we are all enthusiasts here and this website should not be use as a reference. Only the official sites: Traveline and VOSA, as well as the official companies websites are the ones to be trust. EVEN THIS WEBSITE SPECULATED REGARDING THE WITHDRAWAL OF FIRST X54 AND THAT DIDNT HAPPEN. You owe to everyone an apology!!!!!

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    8. The trouble with VOSA is that it often has quirks and weirdnesses that make it difficult to work out exactly what is changing and how.

      But that shouldn't mean we can't discuss what we think it means, the impact on passengers, etc. That's what this place is for. Yes, it will be speculation until confirmed by Traveline or the operator, but if we don't discuss what *could* be happening, we might as well not bother.

      Claudio regularly searches out the latest changes to post here, and of course might misread or misinterpret things as we all might. But it's appreciated that he does. I'd much rather people here "jump ahead and speculate wildly" than not post anything.

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  30. Anyone looked at Twitter feed for
    FirstShampton today? Seems that someone is trolling them with similar named acct of First_Soton & giving sarcastic replies to tweets saying may as well use Bluestar etc.
    Trouble is that users haven't twigged as both accts are replying to same tweets, causing confusion along the way.

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  31. Bluestar have now announced their Christmas running schedules and one thing I noticed was evening services till late on New Year`s Day for the first time akin to Sunday evening times.

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  32. YEllow Buses - new timetables in January!!!

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  34. Most ordinary regular passengers would not know what type of vehicle they were travelling on.To most it's just a bus that gets them from A to B

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    1. You are right that most ordinary passengers, neither care or know, what vehicle type they are on, however, it has been very noticeable just how many have commented on how much nicer Bluestar 17 buses are, compared to First 11. The biggest difference noted has been that they are not slipping all over the place on the nasty plastic (yes, I know they are leather!) seats. They are also commenting on how nice it is that they can actually talk to the driver, rather than having him behind a screen.

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    2. Those comfortable leather seats have non slip coatings, it is impossible to slip off them. They are also much more hygienic. If you like sitting in other peoples dead skin cells please do use the Bluestar 17.

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    3. Indeed-I have never slipped off on one-Much more hygenic also than moquette and easier to keep clean in particular when people with bad habbits,such as putting their feet up on them do so-A large number of moquette seats are in shocking condition due to this bad habbit

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  35. I still see empty 17s between Weston and City Centre

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    1. As previously pointed out on here just wait until those with First weekly and monthly passes start expiring and we will see then.

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  36. Not surprised-It's now so overbused.An enviromentleist nightmare

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  37. Yeah first 11s now clogging up Vincent's Walk

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    1. Not on Saturday`s though.

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    2. They have been instructed to clog the stand, a City Red 11 will always have at least one bus on the stand, making it more difficult for the Bluestar 17 to load and unload passengers.

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  38. I Have been speaking to plenty of First Bus drivers without a problem

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    1. I and many others prefer to speak to the driver direct and not through those god damn screens hence the rise of Bluestar across the city.

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    2. I'd like to see you sat in a cab being threatened and abused with no screen.

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    3. The driver isn't there for you to socialise with.

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    4. People seem to forget the bus is for getting from A to B not to cause delay and distraction from members of the public thinking its ok to stand at the front and distract the driver, sit down and let the driver get on with the job.

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    5. Screens are a pain at times, but I don't feel safe driving lates in certain parts of Southampton without them. All very well for keyboard experts to pontificate but they don't live in the real world.

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    6. How do taxi drivers cope with no screens?

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    7. Some people seem afraid to walk through Shirley at night even though I have done so many times without any trouble touchwood.Too many people read headlines in the papers and think we live in a violent city which isn't the case at all.

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  39. Not whlst the bus is in motion I trust

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  40. A first driver overheard speaking to Bluestar driver today, said first are down by about 11% with 3 extra buses out on the route. At the moment, I would say that neither operator can claim any prizes, but it will be interesting to see how the battle develops.

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    1. Yes when First weekly and monthly passes expire it will become more exciting.

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  41. Claudio, come back! We all miss you....

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  42. I have spoken to drivers before AmI have got off while the bus is moving slowly some off them do appreciate a good chat though

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  43. You have done better than Me Reece.Most First I come across can barely speak

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  44. Marc Reddy has left Portswood. Simon Goff is acting MD.

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    1. Be able to spend more time with His lifeboats now-Mind you He's survived there a long time-Will we now see a change in direction?

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    2. The useless Marc Reddy is MD for Hampshire, Berkshire and Dorset. Simon Goff is head of operations for HBD.

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  45. Anonymous18 November 2018 at 12:13

    I don't force drivers to speak to me you know some of them appreciate a good chat and I only quickly speak before I get off.

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