New paintwork and other changes

Since the Wright-bodied VDL’s and DAF’s that underpin the 27 Macclesfield-Knutsford service were brought into use, they have sported a Cheshire County Council specified navy and orange livery. This morning, I spotted one of them wearing a new silver, yellow and green livery, of the same kind that was brought into use by Cheshire East Council. Repainting of buses mightn’t sound a priority activity but I suppose that paintwork gets shabby over time and there’s never any harm in changing colours while you are freshening up things.

Increasing capacity is of higher priority than painting things and that brings me to the sight of double decker buses on the Macclesfield-Bollington route. When I first moved to Cheshire, the route benefitted from the introduction of new Plaxton Mini-Pointer bodied short wheelbase Dennis Darts. At the time, they stood out in a fleet full of Mercedes minibuses and old arthritic Leylands, Lynxes and Olympians. Since then, the world has turned and Dennis Darts are the dominant type with double deckers and other longer single deckers being in the minority. With that in mind, it is interesting to see the 10 getting larger capacity vehicles of an age older than those brought into service back in 2000. It’s always good to see more people using buses but it would be better if they got to travel on newer vehicles as well. That increase of passenger numbers must have helped the 130 too and an increase in usage is apparent to eyes that remember how many used to be on those Leyland midibuses that were operating on the service ten years ago.

2 thoughts on “New paintwork and other changes

  1. Interesting comments on the 130s & 10s. I used to drive both routes for Crosville 25 / 30 years ago. We had double Deck Bristol VRs on the 130 on a 30 minute frequency and Leyland Nationals on the Bollington route (then known as E10s). Both were always packed & frequently ran late. The 130 was one of four routes into MCR, the others being 127, 128 & 129, but all were variations on a theme. The Bollington service was a cross-town route, running from Moss Rose, through Sunderland St bus station and on to Bollington or, occasionally, Kerridge. We had some kind of uniformity and ethos of service which was lost with deregulation. From what I saw of Macc’s services in later years, everything went rapidly downhill from 1986.

    The same depot also operated the fabled 201 Manchester to Derby Service, and that never made a penny.

  2. Thanks Paul for your interesting perspective. Things did feel ragged when I first moved to the area nearly ten years ago but I think that they improved in ways during that time though perhaps not as much to get things back to the way that they were.

    There was a 127 evening service in 2000 but that was turned into a 130 within months. That E10 has been split as long as I remember it with the 10 going to Bollington and the 9 going to Moss Rose. Ironically, there may be times when the same buses operate both and all of the way of the E10 too.

    The 201 later became the X1 by the looks of things and Stagecoach nearly made a go of it before First “stole” the contract and sent things downhill again. It’s broken up these days with the Monday to Staurday alternative consisting of a 392/3 working to Stockport, a 108 going to Ashbourne and a Trent Barton service going the rest of the way into Derby. On Sundays, it all done by two 108’s: Leek-Stockport and Leek-Derby, both operated by different companies.

    Your comment on usage is interesting and has been on the up since 2000 when things really looked fragile. I wonder if investment by the powers that be and their taking more of an interest in what was on offer has helped.

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