First Kernow

GBM

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10 year old instead of 20 year old deckers! Most likely as most of the non dda deckers are going imminently.
But for the love of old buses, the 30 year old Volvo open toppers will be back in a month or so!
A massive challenge for engineers and drivers; difficult to drive with their individual 'quirks'.
 
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83G/84D

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Many thanks for confirming this, what the betting that 23324 also gets re-registered, and receiving UKT552?
More than likely if not already done.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
33421 and 38001 both at the vehicle testing station at Par moor a short time ago.
 
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Penwithian

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A few observations today.
Ex Falriver Dennis Trident 33112 in Penzance on route 18.
Volvo B12M-62 20504 (AO00RCU) arrived in Penzance on a driver training run as I passed it at 10:45. Later sister 20502 (AO02RBZ) was heading west on the A394 at Ashton also on driver training duties.
At Penzance Bus Station at 16:40, a early arrival for Sunday's bus running day was Hampshire Bus Preservation Group's Southern Vectis Bristol RESL6G ECW HDL23E, which was later driven to Long Rock Depot? for storage.
 

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83G/84D

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There were three vehicles (FLF, VR & RE) at Camborne and three ( 2 x VR & Dart) at Truro today, all hopefully to head to Penzance over the weekend. A Western National minibus in "badgers and flags / skunkline" colours headed west on the A30 near Bodmin around lunchtime.
 

Busaholic

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10 year old instead of 20 year old deckers! Most likely as most of the non dda deckers are going imminently.
But for the love of old buses, the 30 year old Volvo open toppers will be back in a month or so!
Positively modern for somebody who grew up with AEC Regents and Regals, not forgetting double-deck trams (just!:lol:)
 

Goldfish62

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A few observations today.
Ex Falriver Dennis Trident 33112 in Penzance on route 18.
Volvo B12M-62 20504 (AO00RCU) arrived in Penzance on a driver training run as I passed it at 10:45. Later sister 20502 (AO02RBZ) was heading west on the A394 at Ashton also on driver training duties.
At Penzance Bus Station at 16:40, a early arrival for Sunday's bus running day was Hampshire Bus Preservation Group's Southern Vectis Bristol RESL6G ECW HDL23E, which was later driven to Long Rock Depot? for storage.
VR SFJ106R was also driving through Penzance yesterday afternoon.
 

AaronR

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Questions!

Hi! Just returned back from a week in Perranporth, and it has led me to ask a few questions about First ops down there!

Is the first depot for Newquay in Summercourt where the Western Greyhound fire was? Do they have a depot in Newquay itself?

Are there any specific bus allocations to routes or is anything used on any route?

Are the drivers/routes/vehicles interlinked? I believe in WG days buses and drivers say from Newquay would end up all over the place linking on to other routes until they ended back at Newquay? Do drivers work full routes, like the 87 to Truro, then break and return? Maybe someone could give me an idea of a drivers typica shift route wise?

I travelled on the Truro Park and Ride which was a nice experience on the Citaros, I presume these drivers are just rota'd on this route?

Sorry for all the questions! Hope you can help!
 

83G/84D

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Here's wishing everyone going to Penzance tomorrow an enjoyable day.The weather looks good again.

There may be a few potential vehicle changes, I was told earlier. FLF 824 KDV has had a gearbox issue but hopefully will still make it. Depending on what happens with the FLF, VR AFJ 706T may swap places with AFJ 749T.

Whatever happens I am sure it will be a good day. :)
 

Busaholic

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Here's wishing everyone going to Penzance tomorrow an enjoyable day.The weather looks good again.

There may be a few potential vehicle changes, I was told earlier. FLF 824 KDV has had a gearbox issue but hopefully will still make it. Depending on what happens with the FLF, VR AFJ 706T may swap places with AFJ 749T.

Whatever happens I am sure it will be a good day. :)
I had a chat about 5 p.m. today with a chap who'd brought a FLF down to Hayle Premier Inn car park for an overnight stay. He told me a bus (unspecified) from the Devon contingent had broken down en route, but was expected to be repaired. His bus was no. 1969 in the WN fleet, and in sparkling condition, a real credit to the owners. I only wish my London upbringing had allowed me to travel on such a vehicle!

Earlier, I saw L401 VCV in Morrison's petrol station in Pz, the first time I've seen a bus filling up there since Western Greyhound days, when all their Penwith fleet used to do so.

From my few minutes in Hayle I can also report the Plymouth Atlantean 171 arriving as I left.
 

richw

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I can't make it unfortunately tomorrow, in the middle of moving house., I did pass VR 'Thomas Hardy' on the A30 near Victoria Services late morning.
Busaholic- I've been driving back and forth between liskeard, Redruth and Angarrack today and didn't see any broken down buses on my travels, so can assume it didn't break in that area
 
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pompeyfan

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Questions!

Hi! Just returned back from a week in Perranporth, and it has ledy me to ask a few questions about First ops down there!

Is the first depot for Newquay in Summercourt where the Western Greyhound fire was? Do they have a depot in Newquay itself?
Can't answer that I'm afraid.

Are there any specific bus allocations to routes or is anything used on any route?
I believe the only routes that big buses can go on is the 14 and 18, when I say big bus I mean SPD Darts and B7's, Scania's etc

Are the drivers/routes/vehicles interlinked? I believe in WG days buses and drivers say from Newquay would end up all over the place linking on to other routes until they ended back at Newquay? Do drivers work full routes, like the 87 to Truro, then break and return? Maybe someone could give me an idea of a drivers typica shift route wise?
I can't speak for Kernow, but where I work I always end up back to the depot, I think the 14 and 18 interwork.

I travelled on the Truro Park and Ride which was a nice experience on the Citaros, I presume these drivers are just rota'd on this route?

Sorry for all the questions! Hope you can help!
I would imagine park and ride drivers do indeed have a separate rota and would only usually do P&R, again, where I work, P&R drivers are on about £2 an hour less as they're not cash handling.
 

richw

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The big long buses do escape from the 14/18 on occasion but is there normal home, can be found on 10/17/Truro to Newquay and Truro to st Austell/Bodmin I've seen them on.
The Truro park and ride staff I believe some TUPEd from western greyhound when First won the contract so possibly on completely different contracts, although heard First gave them improved contracts as western greyhound contracts were considerably inferior.
First have purchased the WG depot where the fire was from the administrator, the administrator reports are available freely online should you wish to know how much for.
 

DaveHarries

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Perhaps FSW_Official could confirm but a photo has been posted to the "FirstBus Enthusiasts" group on Facebook of a Wright StreetDeck in corporate livery but with no vinyls. The person who posted the photo wrote that it was "new streetdeck for First Cornwall seen at Wrightbus on test."

Didn't know Kernow were expecting any of these but, if they are, does anyone (ie. FSW_Official) know what route(s) these will be for and how many are due?

Dave
 

richw

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Perhaps FSW_Official could confirm but a photo has been posted to the "FirstBus Enthusiasts" group on Facebook of a Wright StreetDeck in corporate livery but with no vinyls. The person who posted the photo wrote that it was "new streetdeck for First Cornwall seen at Wrightbus on test."

Didn't know Kernow were expecting any of these but, if they are, does anyone (ie. FSW_Official) know what route(s) these will be for and how many are due?

Dave
Several drivers I speak with have said there is an order for street decks in place. I understand from those conversations it relates to the average age limit on the U1/U2/U3 contract being an average age of 5 years, with the E400s approaching 5 years at the end of the 2016/17 year, so need replacing by the end of the tax year.
It has also been suggested less strongly by those contacts new vehicles are expected for the 14/18 this tax year, but varied info whether brand new or cascades.
 

TheGrandWazoo

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Several drivers I speak with have said there is an order for street decks in place. I understand from those conversations it relates to the average age limit on the U1/U2/U3 contract being an average age of 5 years, with the E400s approaching 5 years at the end of the 2016/17 year, so need replacing by the end of the tax year.
It has also been suggested less strongly by those contacts new vehicles are expected for the 14/18 this tax year, but varied info whether brand new or cascades.
My understanding is that there will be deckers but e400mmc rather than Streetdecks
 

83G/84D

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Perhaps FSW_Official could confirm but a photo has been posted to the "FirstBus Enthusiasts" group on Facebook of a Wright StreetDeck in corporate livery but with no vinyls. The person who posted the photo wrote that it was "new streetdeck for First Cornwall seen at Wrightbus on test."

Didn't know Kernow were expecting any of these but, if they are, does anyone (ie. FSW_Official) know what route(s) these will be for and how many are due?

Dave
Is it possible to provide a link please? I am not on facebook but would like to see the photo.
 

TheGrandWazoo

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I would have thought that a double-decker would be a better ride over the distance of the 14/18 route. Wonder if they will give route branding to the E400MMCs and Streetdecks.

Dave
FSW Official has already indicated they have plans for Bus Kernow when mention was made of bus flags. I'm sure that when they can confirm anything then we'll find out.

New kit would certainly be a fillip to a fleet that, to be honest, is looking better than a year or two anyway.
 

FSW Official

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Perhaps FSW_Official could confirm but a photo has been posted to the "FirstBus Enthusiasts" group on Facebook of a Wright StreetDeck in corporate livery but with no vinyls. The person who posted the photo wrote that it was "new streetdeck for First Cornwall seen at Wrightbus on test."

Didn't know Kernow were expecting any of these but, if they are, does anyone (ie. FSW_Official) know what route(s) these will be for and how many are due?

Dave
That's because we aren't expecting any!
 

didbygraham

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It was confirmed tonight in Plymouth by Alex Carter that they are NOT getting any Streetdecks as FSWOfficial has already noted on this forum. 30 new buses due ADL Enviro 400 MMCs
 

GBM

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It was confirmed tonight in Plymouth by Alex Carter that they are NOT getting any Streetdecks as FSWOfficial has already noted on this forum. 30 new buses due ADL Enviro 400 MMCs
Oh goody! ADL Enviro 400 MMC - vehicles get longer/taller/wider, but the routes they run on don't! Smaller sized vehicles would be ideal. Try meeting a 6 wheeled coach in the narrows between Treen & Lamorna. He won't reverse & officially neither can a First vehicle. Hence very late running in the 1/1A/300 summer timetable. Strangely those who timetable the runs never take scenes like this into consideration. Obviously can't blame our coaching friends as local tractors and trailers have the same effect. Up to an hour's delay many times on this run.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Questions!
Are there any specific bus allocations to routes or is anything used on any route?

Are the drivers/routes/vehicles interlinked? I believe in WG days buses and drivers say from Newquay would end up all over the place linking on to other routes until they ended back at Newquay? Do drivers work full routes, like the 87 to Truro, then break and return? Maybe someone could give me an idea of a drivers typica shift route wise?

I travelled on the Truro Park and Ride which was a nice experience on the Citaros, I presume these drivers are just rota'd on this route?

Sorry for all the questions! Hope you can help!
Cam only speak on Penzance area. Mousehole has to use small Optair's to ensure they are able to travel between The Old Coastguard and Mousehole harbour. If a 16/16A fails, it is usually a Mousehole vehicle taken off to replace it.
Four or five drivers are on a fixed Mousehole roster, but also drive on other routes as part of that roster. They stay on that roster until they ask to move off and another volunteer takes their place.
Late drivers are also volunteers and stay on lates in a similar vein and they cover all routes (including late Mousehole).
In the summer uplift the 17B & 300 routes are all volunteers. Generally not enough staff to fill the requirments, so rest day working and casual drivers fill.
Park and Ride are all ex WG drivers, plus those volunteered from First to fill the gaps as and when the ex WG leave. It is now a First run service, so there is a waiting list for the P&R run.
Shift runs are usually between four and a half hours & five hours fifteen minutes driving. Meal break. Then repeat!
 

AaronR

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Oh goody! ADL Enviro 400 MMC - vehicles get longer/taller/wider, but the routes they run on don't! Smaller sized vehicles would be ideal. Try meeting a 6 wheeled coach in the narrows between Treen & Lamorna. He won't reverse & officially neither can a First vehicle. Hence very late running in the 1/1A/300 summer timetable. Strangely those who timetable the runs never take scenes like this into consideration. Obviously can't blame our coaching friends as local tractors and trailers have the same effect. Up to an hour's delay many times on this run.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---

Cam only speak on Penzance area. Mousehole has to use small Optair's to ensure they are able to travel between The Old Coastguard and Mousehole harbour. If a 16/16A fails, it is usually a Mousehole vehicle taken off to replace it.
Four or five drivers are on a fixed Mousehole roster, but also drive on other routes as part of that roster. They stay on that roster until they ask to move off and another volunteer takes their place.
Late drivers are also volunteers and stay on lates in a similar vein and they cover all routes (including late Mousehole).
In the summer uplift the 17B & 300 routes are all volunteers. Generally not enough staff to fill the requirments, so rest day working and casual drivers fill.
Park and Ride are all ex WG drivers, plus those volunteered from First to fill the gaps as and when the ex WG leave. It is now a First run service, so there is a waiting list for the P&R run.
Shift runs are usually between four and a half hours & five hours fifteen minutes driving. Meal break. Then repeat!
Excellent thanks for your help! In regards of the other routes, I.E to lands end and st Ives, do drivers on other rotas just cover all the other different routes? And does the 18 to Truro have its own drivers? When they get to Truro is it then a break and an 18 back to Penzance?
 

TheGrandWazoo

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Oh goody! ADL Enviro 400 MMC - vehicles get longer/taller/wider, but the routes they run on don't! Smaller sized vehicles would be ideal.

Cam only speak on Penzance area. Mousehole has to use small Optair's to ensure they are able to travel between The Old Coastguard and Mousehole harbour. If a 16/16A fails, it is usually a Mousehole vehicle taken off to replace it.
They won't be getting wider. e400MMC are the max 2.55m width!

Perhaps AC covered it last night (Graham could confirm?) as to which routes are due to get them but I think it's the 14/18 and the U1-3 that will receive them. Therefore, I don't think that it'll be an issue for a while on the 300!

With the slimline Optare Solos, there should be sufficient to cover Mousehole this year? There's the existing 53503/4 and 53701/53826. 53505 is returning from Somerset and if there's a failure then a Caetano Dart can be drafted onto the 11 or 16?
 

Goldfish62

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Oh goody! ADL Enviro 400 MMC - vehicles get longer/taller/wider, but the routes they run on don't! Smaller sized vehicles would be ideal. Try meeting a 6 wheeled coach in the narrows between Treen & Lamorna. He won't reverse & officially neither can a First vehicle. Hence very late running in the 1/1A/300 summer timetable. Strangely those who timetable the runs never take scenes like this into consideration. Obviously can't blame our coaching friends as local tractors and trailers have the same effect. Up to an hour's delay many times on this run.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Fear not, same width as the VRs and LH coaches of yesteryear, and indeed the same width and height as the clapped out Olympians of recent times. However I don't envy you drivers. I was on an East Lancs Trident on the 1A the other day and it was quite a squeeze without the summer traffic!
 

GBM

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Excellent thanks for your help! In regards of the other routes, I.E to lands end and st Ives, do drivers on other rotas just cover all the other different routes? And does the 18 to Truro have its own drivers? When they get to Truro is it then a break and an 18 back to Penzance?
Mousehole roster mostly do 6/6A with the occasional foray on to other routes. All other drivers do all other routes at all times. Every day different, every week different, and so on. Variety is the spice of life. All drivers have their like and dislike routes; but they're all paid the same (apart from new drivers). When you go with a buddy it is anticipated you will cover all routes in that two week period.
A few Truro rosters do an 18; but most 18/14 covered by Camborne and Penzance.
Driving times have steadily increased as the years have gone on and a driver can usually be in the saddle for up to five hours fifteen minutes at a stretch. Meal breaks can be scheduled anywhere (only Camborne has a canteen). Then another long stint in the saddle.
If everything runs on time then there will be time for a short break at each end. In reality drivers are rarely on time so perhaps just enough time to go to the loo (much to the displeasure of queuing passengers) then leave slightly late and resume.
Penzance to Falmouth is broken up at Helston on the drivers duty board; thus making it a legitimate run to comply with regulations (distance driven). However, it is the same driver and same bus. Summer uplift changes slightly as a driver can do a Penzance to Helston (timetabled Falmouth), change drivers; cross the road and take a Helston to Penzance (ex Falmouth)
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
They won't be getting wider. e400MMC are the max 2.55m width!

Perhaps AC covered it last night (Graham could confirm?) as to which routes are due to get them but I think it's the 14/18 and the U1-3 that will receive them. Therefore, I don't think that it'll be an issue for a while on the 300!

With the slimline Optare Solos, there should be sufficient to cover Mousehole this year? There's the existing 53503/4 and 53701/53826. 53505 is returning from Somerset and if there's a failure then a Caetano Dart can be drafted onto the 11 or 16?
Maybe it is. There are no spare open toppers, so when one fails a normal closed decker will take it's place. It is not uncommon to see a closed decker on a 300.
It was always said that Penzance would never receive anything new at all because of the routes they cover.
A senior member reportedly said that there was no point in putting new vehicles on say a 1/1A (or 2) for it to receive a dented roof and sides. First would prefer older vehicles so damage would be less noticeable.

Depots do not hold 'spare' vehicles (First policy again but depots can hold spare if they present a suitable business case). If something goes down there is rarely anything to replace it.
Similarly no spare drivers, so much work behind the scenes when someone goes sick; and rarely, dropped runs.
 
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Busaholic

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When First won back tendered Penwith area routes from Western Greyhound, which in retrospect was the beginning of the end for the latter, it was stated by Buses magazine that a separate low-cost operation had been set up by First in order to achieve this, on route 16 for instance. I wasn't then on this forum, so don't know what was said at the time to confirm or deny. If true, does this separate unit still exist, and, if not, when was it broken up?

I see a few 18s most days, but predominantly on the Pz- Camborne section, and deckers are still comparatively rare, but I've noticed recently the dep from Pz to Truro shortly before 1900 is usually a dd. Is this a Truro allocated bus?
 

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