Have you ever traveled on the first journey of a bus/coach service?

Discussion in 'Buses & Coaches' started by Martin2012, 30 Aug 2015.

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  1. Martin2012

    Martin2012 Member

    17 Jul 2012
    A little while ago I asked if anyone on here had travelled on the last journey of a bus/coach route before it got withdrawn.

    As a contrast to that has anyone on here ever travelled on the first journey of a new service, or the first journey on a service that has just changed operators?

    Back in April 2014 I was the first passenger to board the 82 service in Yate and was the first passenger to do the complete run all the way to Southmead and back.

    I also ended up riding the first journey on the X46 which sticks in my mind because most other people on the route were still opting for the X27.

    In addition, I rode the National Express 300 service between Bath and Bristol on the first day that Lucketts Of Fareham were operating the route and I also, by pure coincidence rode on the 320 between Birmingham and Leeds on the first day Arriva Derby were operating the route.
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  3. 455driver

    455driver Veteran Member

    10 May 2010
    I had the pleasure of picking up a brand new double decker bus from the manufacturer and fitted the trade plates, is that new enough?

    I also took a new Leyland Lynx into service from the depot on its first day.
  4. Blindtraveler

    Blindtraveler Established Member

    28 Feb 2011
    Nowhere near enough to a Pacer :(
    Was onboard the first 2 journeys on the short lived X1 Raillink Haddington to Walliford that Prentice of Haddington tried last Feb.
  5. causton

    causton Established Member

    4 Aug 2010
    Somewhere between WY372 and MV7
    One of my colleagues rode the last subsidised bus service by Herts County Council on a route last night! However it has been replaced by a commercial service by another operator so maybe not quite as impressive!
  6. ThePannier

    ThePannier Member

    31 Oct 2014
    County Durham
    I rode the ''Coast & Country'' branded services on their first day under a new brand (previously ''Lime'', was my favourite brand by Go North East...) and with brand new buses, Wright Streetlite Micro-Hybrids. I had a trip to Sunderland and back on the 78A (Sundays and evenings); the vehicles operate the 8 (Stanley to Sunderland) and 78 (Consett to Sunderland) services. They're not my favourites. I miss the B10BLEs they used to have...
    Last edited: 5 Nov 2015
  7. 34D

    34D Established Member

    9 Feb 2011
    I've driven lots of 'first journeys' does that count?
  8. Busaholic

    Busaholic Established Member

    7 Jun 2014
    By extraordinary coincidence I happened to be in Croydon in May 2000 when the first public tram ran on Tramlink, at 13.15 from George Street. It was unannounced in advance and I've never seen any photos of it, but I was on it. I was desperate to buy a ticket but the damned thing was free, the only time I've ever cursed such an occurrence!
  9. 90019

    90019 Established Member

    29 May 2008
    I was the first driver at my depot to take the Wright Streetlite demonstrator we had out in service, if that counts?
  10. Statto

    Statto Established Member

    8 Feb 2011
    At home or at the pub
    I rode on some of the last Merseyside PTE routes, & the first Merseybus routes over the weekend of 25th-26th October 1986.
  11. lightbulb

    lightbulb Member

    15 May 2010
    I travelled on both the first and last journeys on the 202 Dunstable to Harpenden, operated initially by Arriva the Shires, then by Grant Palmer, and finally by Centrebus, all under contract to Bedfordshire County Council.

    The original idea for the route came about at a meeting of the short-lived Arriva Passenger Focus Group (my memory is hazy on the actual name of the group) in Luton circa 1997, which met at the Castle Street Garage. I was invited to be on that group, and had the idea of a route between Caddington and Harpenden. A fellow member had the idea of a route between Caddington and the Luton & Dunstable Hospital via Skimpot Road Tesco, and I took both ideas away and came up with the Dunstable to Harpenden route.

    Working for London Transport at the time, I took the opportunity to run a dummy schedule through BUSMAN, giving it the route number 331 (a combination of the existing 231 Luton to Dunstable via Caddington, and the 321 Luton to Rickmansworth), and scheduling it to run every 45 minutes using two vehicles, with a two-hourly single-vehicle Sunday service extended to St Albans. I then wrote to both BCC and HCC suggesting that they might like to support it financially, but only received a reply from Hertfordshire, who noted that they doubted enough use as a cross-county service for it to be a viable proposition.

    A year passed, without hearing anything more, then I read a short article in the "Village Voice" (a short-lived local newspaper covering Slip End and surrounding villages) advertising the introduction of new route 202 between Dunstable and Harpenden, running every 1 to 2 hours (eight journeys a day) Monday to Saturday.

    I took a taxi from Caddington into Dunstable in time for the first departure at 0600. The route was not quite as I had originally envisaged, as I had indicated Tesco (Skimpot) as a timing point on the main road, and was surprised to find the bus running into the store grounds. I had also expected the bus to run between Caddington and Aley Green via Manor Road and Little Green Lane, so that the stop in Caddington was common to both the 202 and the 231, but instead it ran via Dunstable Road and Mancroft Road. Apparently Beds CC was keen to establish a bus service via the Caddington end of Mancroft Road. It didn't last, and the bus was re-routed via Manor Road and Little Green Lane the following year.

    I used to use it every week for my journey into London (I stayed in London Mon-Fri) and back to Caddington, and saw a reduction in frequency over the years, until at withdrawal in 2011 it ran just four journeys a day Mon-Fri. As the bus was "my baby", I had to be on the last ever journey, although living in Caddington, I didn't take it all the way to Dunstable.

    I must admit I was always a little miffed that a certain county councillor claimed that the route was his idea, but I suppose that's the nature of politics. Indeed, had it not been for the Rural Bus Grant, the 202 would never have been viable.
    Last edited: 3 Sep 2015
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