First Scotland East (Midland Bluebird and West Lothian operations)

Baileygirl

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They have been used on the 63, unless of course I was misreading '63 Queensferry', picking up on the 63 stop at the Gyle, as somehow being a 68.
There is a school run on the 63 to South Queensferry in the morning where the bus then does the 68 so this could be where you seen it.
 
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overthewater

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Except for the 90 minute frequency on the 63, that's not what would be normal.

That not up to First, that up to Edinburgh City Council, its unclear when that will change, First doesnt even know this.

However going by the OP post it would suggest he meaning the West Lothian network?
 

CN04NRJ

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That not up to First, that up to Edinburgh City Council, its unclear when that will change, First doesnt even know this.

However going by the OP post it would suggest he meaning the West Lothian network?

Then the network isn't back to normal.

The 20/63 being operated by FSE with 'West Lothian' branded buses would suggest that it is part of their network... or do we need a separate thread for FSE operations in the Edinburgh Council area?
 

overthewater

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Its a busy post reply day isn't it :D

Network in West Lothian is only at 95%, 600 not back to Airport. Some frequencies not back to normal I.e. 27 is every 30 min instead of 20 min.
Welcome to the new normal, However I didn't release the 27s had not returned back to every 20mins so Shame on First for putting in this sneaky cut, that what it is a permanent cut. Because everywhere else has returned to basic normals level ( FSE just restored the last of the reduced service this week) just missing the parts the companies wanted rid IE First Glasgow X1 Stagecoach ES: 23 or X24 going to Glasgow Airport. With FSE X35 no longer going to Glasgow.

So that means Craigshill is now really in the hands of LCB, since they offer a 4 buses an hour to livingston Town centre, plus links to Broxburn and Edinburgh.

With the Airport, that will all be dependent on and if the place gets alot busier, Most of the workers are still using the X24/25 and walking down or catching the 747 from Ratio.


Then the network isn't back to normal.

The 20/63 being operated by FSE with 'West Lothian' branded buses would suggest that it is part of their network... or do we need a separate thread for FSE operations in the Edinburgh Council area?

Yes, partly because people have been so pardantic with thread of late and secondly because as par with the newspaper report it does look like we might be seeing alot more further changes, disagreements and public meetings over the council tenders, and just wait till South Queensferry get its teeth into No63


Report in Edinburgh Evening News on Wednesday re Ratho residents complaining about service it was stated that the frequency on the 20 was being increased to every 30 min on 28th September.

The News report is at the bottom of this post:

This is what happens when the council comes up with sneaky cost cutting measure then forgets why this was designed like this, on the next retendering process. Unlike the cut the 27 above which is First own fault, this has nothing to do with the company and it's the Council problem. It still stated only one Tender was put in for the no20. The whole reason the no20 was designed like this was to allowed connection onto the tram at gyle so bus didn't need to take passengers city centre. Once again idiot MP's are talking about bus services , like when was the last time she took the bus? Surly they should have had the consultation BEFORE the tenders went out? I bet she doesn't even know about service 40 that provides a direct link to ERI, which many parts don't have the pleasure with....


Yes they were complaining that a connection that they couldn't do before now costs more, despite the fact it wasn't possible before. Makes sense!

Technically bus travel in to Edinburgh is cheaper and faster for Ratho residents now as you can connect with the X24/X25/X38 at Ratho Station and the Edinburgh Dayticket is only £4.

I'd assume the 63 will also go to full timetable on the same date?

You have to wonder why First are NOT promoting this fact about the cheaper tickets and a simple change of bus at the bottom of the main road? Sulry First could put up poster telling people change on the A8 and get Cheaper day ticket, or do people really want to use the tram??

Maybe someone should tell Kate Gillan If she brought the First 4 week ticket it would cost £51 for all connection.


RESIDENTS in Ratho say a change of bus operator has left them paying more for the same service. First Bus took over the running of the No 20 service from Lothian Buses on August 31 and insists it has introduced improvements.
But residents have long been unhappy about the lack of a direct service between the village and the city centre. Many take the bus to the nearest tram stop to get into town, but now the service is run by First Bus they can no longer use a Lothian Buses £4.50 day ticket to cover both bus and tram fares.

Kate Gillan, who has helped set up campaign group Living Streets Ratho, said: “A lot of villagers use the bus to get to the tram stop because there is no direct bus, but now it’s about double the price - someone calculated you could spend £57 per month for the First Bus connection and then you have the cost of the tram. Before it was just one app you would need.” First Bus say people could still switch from bus to tram using One-Ticket which is accepted by all transport operators - but the cost would be £5.50 a day. Judy Wightman, chair of Ratho and district community council, said they had conducted a survey of local views. “Basically the buses don’t go where people want to go and they don’t go when they want them to go.

“What people really want is a bus service to the centre of Edinburgh and they want one in the evening. “At the moment - since Covid hit - we only have an hourly service. The 6.30am one has gone, which means people who work overnight can’t get home and because the 7.30am has gone it means children going into St Augustine’s High School have to catch the 7am bus. “And at the other end of the day, if you’re in town you have to leave before 8pm.”
Edinburgh West Lib Dem MP Christine Jardine has organised a Zoom meeting with residents tonight at 8pm to hear their complaints and see what can be done.

She said: “The community has been unhappy with the bus service for some time and this just compounds the issues. I want to hear their views so that I am able to take their case forward.
“Ratho is an area that is poorly served and there should be proper consultation with the people in Ratho about local transport.”

A First Bus spokesman said it ran the 20 route on behalf of the city council and the service level and any changes had to be agreed in advance with them. He said: “The One-Ticket is accepted through our mobile app on board, meaning passengers can still purchase a bus ticket and connect up with the tram. “We have also introduced a flat fare structure similar to that of the previous operator, but with the added benefit of more connections and great value tickets along with access to the rest of the First West Lothian network. “In fact, the service now provided covers more areas and connects with more communities than previously possible.
“The service 20 is currently operating on a Covid timetable until September 28th when a number of improvements including evening and weekend journeys will be introduced as well as a 30 minute service.”
 

Jordan Adam

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You have to wonder why First are NOT promoting this fact about the cheaper tickets and a simple change of bus at the bottom of the main road? Sulry First could put up poster telling people change on the A8 and get Cheaper day ticket, or do people really want to use the tram??

Maybe someone should tell Kate Gillan If she brought the First 4 week ticket it would cost £51 for all connection.



Agree, it's strange that there's not even a mention of the connection on the First website. The X24/X25/X38 provide 8 buses per hour so it's not as if it's a infrequent service either. Most bus users in Ratho are either going in to the city centre or to the commercial areas to the west of the city. Firsts routes cover the vast majority of those, i can't see why anyone in Ratho would need to use the tram.
 
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do we need a separate thread for FSE operations in the Edinburgh Council area?
Must admit I'd rather have seen a thread for the Edinburgh/Midlothian bus network (regardless of operator) and another one for West Lothian & Midland network (regardless of operator). Then operator-specific threads for vehicle procurement/specs/sales/depots. I suppose there will always be some overlap but really none of the 20/63/68 routes go into West Lothian at all.

This is what happens when the council comes up with sneaky cost cutting measure then forgets why this was designed like this, on the next retendering process. Unlike the cut the 27 above which is First own fault, this has nothing to do with the company and it's the Council problem.
There's nothing that prevents First from offering something beyond the minimum standards set by Edinburgh Council. Lothian only had to run the 63 every hour but chose to operate every 40 minutes Mon-Fri. If First West Lothian want to grow a market in Edinburgh they need to invest themselves - it won't be handed on a plate by the council.
 

overthewater

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There's nothing that prevents First from offering something beyond the minimum standards set by Edinburgh Council. Lothian only had to run the 63 every hour but chose to operate every 40 minutes Mon-Fri. If First West Lothain want to grow a market in Edinburgh they need to invest themselves - it won't be handed on a plate.

As its already been stated numerous times the current the current Covid TT implemented back in March, So if they any complaints its need to directed at Lothian and City Council, who agreed this revision. IE the minimum standards set by Edinburgh Council have yet to be operated by First.

First would not make any radical improvements at this moment of time until the council are happy the basic TT is feasible. As already pointed out With No20, First has a cheaper day ticket for passengers using to travel to just Gyle/sighthill or Edinburgh city centre. They have starting point.
 

GusB

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The 20/63 being operated by FSE with 'West Lothian' branded buses would suggest that it is part of their network... or do we need a separate thread for FSE operations in the Edinburgh Council area?
I'm not sure we do need a separate thread for First Scotland East services within Edinburgh. There's no reason why they cannot be discussed here, in the First Scotland East thread.
Yes, partly because people have been so pardantic with thread of late and secondly because as par with the newspaper report it does look like we might be seeing alot more further changes, disagreements and public meetings over the council tenders, and just wait till South Queensferry get its teeth into No63
What on earth do you mean by "people being so pardantic with thread lately [sic]"?
 

CN04NRJ

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I'm not sure we do need a separate thread for First Scotland East services within Edinburgh. There's no reason why they cannot be discussed here, in the First Scotland East thread.

Indeed, I was being sarcastic in response to 'other posters' but it's difficult to convey over text :lol:
 

PaulMc7

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New timetables in the forthcoming section on the First website for the 20 and 63 starting next week now available
 

overthewater

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Of course on 63 its every 40mins during the day which matches what Lothian offered, with a 10min layover at each end.
 

Jordan Adam

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Of course on 63 its every 40mins during the day which matches what Lothian offered, with a 10min layover at each end.

On most runs at Balerno the bus will run dead to Livingston to allow for driver change over (as has been happening at the moment), quite a bit of dead mileage, surely the service could be extended commercially.
 
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On most runs at Balerno the bus will run dead to Livingston to allow for driver change over (as has been happening at the moment), quite a bit of dead mileage, surely the service could be extended commercially.
Going foward with the 40 minute frequency and a 2 hr 40 min round trip there should only be a brief layover in Balerno as the service takes about 1 hr 10 mins each way. Therefore it might make more sense to change drivers at Gyle Centre or one of the Park & Ride sites.
What commercial extension did you have in mind? First Scotland East never made a success of anything commercially in Edinburgh at the best of times. I can't see anything turning a profit under present circumstances. There's little point running a single bus out the A71 or A70 to their West Lothian stronghold either.
 

overthewater

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Surly the Drivers are doing 2 round trips on the 63 before a change over?

I think the commercial extension would be to operate in service down the A70 then on to Kirknewton then livingston bus stance before heading straight to the depot. Gyle does sound like a better place for a change over.
 
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I think the commercial extension would be to operate in service down the A70 then on to Kirknewton then livingston bus stance before heading straight to the depot.
I suppose that would reinstate a First service of some kind to Kirknewton. But it's probably too little too late for the small amount of Kirknewton-Livingston trade they might win back.
The A70 route is so very thinly populated and there's little natural connection between Balerno & Kirknewton (other than a primary feeder for the high school) that I feel passengers numbers would be virtually zero here. There may be a case for a taxibus. Or perhaps there's one already - would anyone know?
 

overthewater

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I suppose that would reinstate a First service of some kind to Kirknewton. But it's probably too little too late for the small amount of Kirknewton-Livingston trade they might win back.
The A70 route is so very thinly populated and there's little natural connection between Balerno & Kirknewton (other than a primary feeder for the high school) that I feel passengers numbers would be virtually zero here. There may be a case for a taxibus. Or perhaps there's one already - would anyone know?

Your mist the point here, IF the drivers are taking the buses back empty to and from Livingston then why not try and pick up some passengers? Thats what being asked here.
 

Baileygirl

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On most runs at Balerno the bus will run dead to Livingston to allow for driver change over (as has been happening at the moment), quite a bit of dead mileage, surely the service could be extended commercially.
Only bus to run dead on 63 will be at end of day. Changeovers are at Newbridge
 

Baileygirl

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No, the poster of that image mentioned on a Facebook group that it was for driver shuttles to/from Ratho on the 20.
f
First use white vans for all their shuttles in West Lothian and the new Edinburgh Services (Ratho, Gyle & Newbridge). Most don't have First Logos. The picture is a Livingston Shuttle.
 

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