A timetable change last Sunday (2012-04-29) should have been the end of the story for a few months but Arriva have another timetable change for service 130 between Macclesfield and Manchester next Sunday (2012-05-06), On inspection of the new timetable, it would be to extend the Monday to Friday 18:04 departure from Manchester as far as Wilmslow to arrive at 19:10 before returning to the depot again. That certainly makes more sense than terminating at Cheadle Hulme as is the case for this week and having an 18:18 continuing as far as Wilmslow on Saturdays. The new arrangements look more consistent even if Saturday timings differ from the rest of the week; buses run hourly then when they are half-hourly on other weekdays.
Otherwise, the changes introduced in the current timetable remain. These include the termination of the 17:40 evening journey from Macclesfield at Parr’s Wood on Mondays to Fridays and the retiming of the xx:15 journeys from Macclesfield to depart at xx:35 when the inbound buses are arriving into the town at the same time as before. That change gives an 18:35 for Manchester on Saturday before the D&G Monday to Saturday evening service commences at the times that have been in place for a few years now.
The main Monday to Saturday remains unaltered even with these tweaks and it looks as if depot changes in the Greater Manchester area have been the cause. That hasn’t changed the Sunday timetable at all though you have to wonder what cuts to the Bus Service Operators Grant could do yet. Have they contributed to the closure Arriva’s depot near Piccadilly railway station in Manchester, for instance?
Update 2012-05-05: Noticed that driver rosters have changed with morning drivers appearing to work evening services and vice versa. The depot changes must have had some bearing on this.