Televisions on buses.

Discussion in 'Buses & Coaches' started by Geordie driver, 9 Jan 2020.

  1. Geordie driver

    Geordie driver Member

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    Following on from the radios on buses thread....

    In the late 1990s ( I think?) We arrived at work one Monday morning to find most of the buses in our depot had been fitted with TVs. No consultation with staff, they played and endless loop of old on the buses episodes interspersed with coke cola adverts,

    This was from a company that would go mad if you had a radio in the cab as it " distracted" you.

    They were set up so that as the bus noise increased, the volume on the TV increased.

    It was grim, hour after hour of the same old rubbish in your ear, the passengers didn't like them and the drivers hated them. They were set up so the driver couldn't switch them off or turn the volume down, if the bus was running the tv was running.

    Anyone else have experience of this?
     
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  3. Flying Snail

    Flying Snail Member

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    God, no. That wouldn't have lasted a week in my place, plenty of ways to shut off annoying devices I can think of, a bit like the CCTV cameras installed in the cabs that mysteriously grew chewing gum almost as soon as they were installed.

    I found a small set of tools handy for performing minor surgery on the fleet a very useful addition to my workbag, a number of improvements could be made to improve the ambience of one's office, usually best done at remote locations.

    It sounds like you worked for some shower of see you next tuesdays Geordie, almost makes me nostalgic for the laissez-faire attitude of my former workplace.
     
  4. TheGrandWazoo

    TheGrandWazoo Veteran Member

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    You are referring to TOPPS TV, which was a British Bus "innovation" and afflicted a number of their subsidiaries including Northumbria. I can recall them on various NMS vehicles but I think Midland Red North and Midland Fox also had them from my experience; I guess that other BB firms were similarly afflicted.

    It would have been c.1994/5-ish
     
  5. carlberry

    carlberry Established Member

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    My only experience in the industry is very dated and purely head office based, however this usually meant listening to various engineers moaning about the 'improvement's' such as stuffing rags into various important holes (important to the engineers but drafty for the driver), pushing tissues into the bell repeater, disabling the door interlocks and bending/snaping bits of seat/cab because of the none adjustable seating of the time.
    I did hear of one company that dealt with the CCTV issue using the videos they'd recorded of the driver sticking the offending object onto the camera after which most of the failures started happening mid route owing to 'road bumps'!
     
  6. borage

    borage Member

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    Topps goes under after passenger complaints (10 April 1997):
     
  7. LancasterRed

    LancasterRed Member

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    Blackpool Transport do something similar now with their flagship routes. A 15 minute journey was enough, and that's with headphones on full blast.

    Adverts at full blast and stop announcements with a chime before each stop. It's a bus. It stops a lot.
     
  8. Simon75

    Simon75 Member

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    I remember North Western, which was a British bus subsidiary (Winsford garage) had Topps tv on some Leyland Nationals mid 90s
     
  9. Simon75

    Simon75 Member

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    National Express had TVs on Rapid services I think
     
  10. Geordie driver

    Geordie driver Member

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    Back then you could buy a small tv with a vcr built in underneath it, these were encased in a metal box, I assume with a load of padding inside and covered in hard wearing carpet like material outside. It took a while but someone found the location of the pick up for the volume control and they were mysteriously disabled after that.

    Cheers, I was thinking about it on my morning walk and thought I might have got the date a bit late.

    Very Interesting. To my mind it was shear incompetence from people with no idea what it it is like to travel on a bus and no care what it's like to work on a bus, what a waste of money.
     
  11. ag51ruk

    ag51ruk Member

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    And Derby City Transport/City Rider/Blue Bus Services (whatever it was calling itself at the time pre-Arriva) had them as well, although I don't remember then lasting very long
     
  12. zuriblue

    zuriblue Member

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    My local bus company in Switzerland has them as has Postbus. Usually in a 2 screen setup, one screen with stop info and the other with news and ads, thankfully the screen is muted.

    It’s useful as it also gives real time departure info as you come to an interchange point or the train station.
     
  13. rich.davies

    rich.davies Member

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    I remember crosville in Wrexham having Tv's on them. Think they just showed adverts, this must have been mid to late 90s.
     
  14. johntea

    johntea Established Member

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    These were definetely in West Yorkshire on Airedale - Castleford routes as I used to have a weekly trip to town with my gran and vividly remember On The Buses on the bus :D

    The advertising was a complete fail though as I remember absolutely nothing of adverts on them!
     
  15. mic

    mic Member

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    The Bee Line Buzz company leased some West Midlands MCWs and they had TVs on
     
  16. TheGrandWazoo

    TheGrandWazoo Veteran Member

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    All the British Bus subsidiaries were seemingly afflicted.
     
  17. Great_Western

    Great_Western Member

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    When Cardiff Bus first revived their Scania Omnicity bendibuses for the 6/17/18 back in 2006, they were fitted with TV's playing rolling BBC news with the volume turned up quite loudly. From recollection that did not last long at all, with the TV's first being muted and then just switched off altogether. Pretty sure some other buses in the fleet got this too (Perhaps the rigid Omnicities for the 27) but my memory fails me.
     
  18. Busaholic

    Busaholic Established Member

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    Preston Bus, then Corporation run, had these as well.
     
  19. Jordan Adam

    Jordan Adam Established Member

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    When First Aberdeen launched the Platinum 19 the buses showed a live broadcast of BBC News. However due to signal issues the news was often a few days old. As such the feature was turned off. Now the buses just display a slideshow of photos and adverts.
     
  20. Colin M

    Colin M On Moderation

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    First Glasgow fitted some of their B7Ls with screens which showed adverts etc although I don't think it lasted too long.
     
  21. Bus Lightyear

    Bus Lightyear Member

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    Some of First Glasgow's 05/55/06 Volvo B7rles also had them when they were new. The noise from them was deafening and I felt sorry for the drivers who had to put up with them.
     
  22. satisnek

    satisnek Member

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    Sounds awful! I'm glad that such things never penetrated deepest Worcestershire.

    But lessons were not learned. After this at least a couple of first generation TOCs installed similar things, including c2c (or whatever they were called at the time) which, I can remember reading, led to groups of passengers locking themselves in toilets in protest. Central Trains also fitted TV screens in their 323s; thankfully they weren't operational for long.
     
  23. trainmania100

    trainmania100 Established Member

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    The Brighton and Hove buses , mainly the coaster 12, used to have TVs downstairs by the buggy rack which used to loop through the CCTV cameras on board the bus. It didn't show TV programs but was enjoyable to see what everyone else was doing on the bus , this was many years ago now.
    In this day and age the TV wouldn't last 5 minutes it would probably end up vandalised by teens like the many usb ports installed
     
  24. Megafuss

    Megafuss Member

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    Yes, I do recall a TV being present on one of the "famous" Alnwick depot Leyland Olympians. If I correctly recall, the volume of the audio would go up and down depending on the noise in the saloon. Given those meaty engines in them vehicles, it got quite noisy.
     
  25. AY1975

    AY1975 Member

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    Yes, and so did the London-Birmingham "London Liner", which I think was a joint venture between West Midlands Travel and London Regional Transport's coach division London Coaches as a rival to National Express.

    IIRC both the London Liners and the double decker-operated NatEx "Rapide" services had TVs on the upper deck so passengers could choose whether or not they wanted to watch it during the journey.
     
  26. higthomas

    higthomas Member

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    Most buses in London have such a screen; they seem to last alright.

    Oxford Bus company also have TVs showing a rolling selection of (muted) adverts.
     
  27. 175mph

    175mph Member

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    What's the point in having a screen for the passengers only for it to loop through the CCTV cameras on board the bus?
     
  28. Lynford1976

    Lynford1976 Member

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    Yes - Maidstone & District, who had the misfortune of being bought by British Bus in 1995 had these as well, mainly fitted on it's Olympians if I remember correctly.

    Thankfully, Kent's roads soon made the equipment unreliable and it was junked relatively quickly.
     
  29. philthetube

    philthetube Established Member

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    If you know you are watched by CCTV your behaviour will improve.
     
  30. philthetube

    philthetube Established Member

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    I would be quite happy for BBC, or Sky news to be showing on a bus I was travelling on, no volume only subtitles though,
     
  31. 175mph

    175mph Member

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    I doubt it, one of the Stagecoach buses in Hull, it has such a screen, still get teenagers being unruly, some even making funny faces and laughing at themselves when they see themselves on the screen. Besides, don't most people know regardless of the existence of a screen that they are being watched?
     

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