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Author Topic: X53 and X51 buses - Weymouth, Dorchester, Bridport, Lyme Regis, Axminster  (Read 3668 times)
grahame
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« on: August 28, 2019, 04:48:29 pm »

As the X53 / X51 has contracted to an hourly service which finishes early in winter and doesn't start on winter Sundays, reliable connections at Castle Cary would certainly be attractive for many ...

An email in my inbox ... suggesting that the X51 is dropping from an hourly to an every 2 hours service as from next week, and with later start and early finish times.  Also services to be withdrawn on (Winter?) Sundays.

As services that connect with trains and provide main artery services into the towns now cut off from the rail network, any knowledge /concerns / comments here?   I fear at a few days notice it's too late to change plans.
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martyjon
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« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2019, 05:03:22 pm »

As the X53 / X51 has contracted to an hourly service which finishes early in winter and doesn't start on winter Sundays, reliable connections at Castle Cary would certainly be attractive for many ...

An email in my inbox ... suggesting that the X51 is dropping from an hourly to an every 2 hours service as from next week, and with later start and early finish times.  Also services to be withdrawn on (Winter?) Sundays.

As services that connect with trains and provide main artery services into the towns now cut off from the rail network, any knowledge /concerns / comments here?   I fear at a few days notice it's too late to change plans.


I doubt that only a few days notice has been given. Usually bus operators have to give ample notice to the relevant LA's of the intention to cease a service but I suspect the LA's can't be that arsed to spread / circulate the bus operators intentions.

Would it also be a fact that the service is financially supported by the LA's and that support reduces / ceases at the end of the month and the bus operator is "cutting their cloth to suit".
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bradshaw
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« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2019, 05:22:01 pm »

Here is the winter service, valid from 22 September. Each service becomes 2 hourly with the core route of Bridport to Axminster being hourly as a result.

Currently there is an hourly service from/to Dorchester(X51) and Weymouth(X53) arriving in Bridport at the same time, with one of the buses, usually the X51 going on to Axminster.
The summer Sundays see a two hourly service on each route. With the core Bridport to Axminster being hourly as a result.

On Sundays in winter, only the X53 runs using a single bus to operate three services each way (3 more than last year)

https://www.firstgroup.com/uploads/news-attach/Wessex%20Winter%202019%20Timetable%20Book.pdf

The Western Area Transport Action Group provide a monthly meeting report which I often find interesting
 https://watag.org.uk/
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rogerw
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« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2019, 06:30:27 pm »

It also appears that the winter Sunday X53 journeys are supported by a local business(man) and only run until December. Otherwise winter services similar to last winter.  The services are run commercially and thewinter service reflects the reduced demand outside of the tourist season.
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bradshaw
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« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2019, 06:55:31 pm »

This article confirms the financial input

https://www.bridportnews.co.uk/news/17827998.buses-will-travel-bridport-weymouth-winter/
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LiskeardRich
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« Reply #5 on: August 29, 2019, 01:01:01 am »

72 days notice to local authority is required to make changes, these become public with minimum 28 days notice
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grahame
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« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2019, 05:44:35 am »

72 days notice to local authority is required to make changes, these become public with minimum 28 days notice

"Become public" can be a bit interesting.   Notices appear from VOSA online that a route or timetable is being amended, listed (as far as I have seen) by date of filing and members of the public can pay £3.50 for anything more than the "it's changing" headline.   Online and onstop timetables (where they exist) tend to be very late updated to avoid customers turning up to use a bus at a new time before it's running at that time.   It is often possible for local activities to get better and more complete data - there's nothing to say that the bus companies must not tell their (potential) customers and indeed it's typically in its interest, countered sometimes by a desire to minimise negative reaction to negative changed and to minimise reaction opportunities to competitors.
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martyjon
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« Reply #7 on: August 29, 2019, 06:45:21 am »

I find most annoying, not to me personally, that when revised timetables are posted at stops many passemgers do not know the timetables are a changing. I draw fellow passengers attention to the "effective from" date on the timetable display sheet. Annoying is the fact that these revised timetables in my area are usually posted on the Thursday or Friday before the new timetable is effective on the forthcoming Sunday which panics some parents who rely on childcare provision on how they are to rearrange their childcare in maybe less than 24 hours notice. A bringing forward of a bus by 10 - 15 mins in a morning to improve reliability during the peak morning commute into the city is an extra hours, at least, childcare to pay for. Likewise extra time to get out of the city in the evenings built into an already tight schedule can also lead to increased childcare costs.

With the MetroBus I-Points in Bristol I see no reason why the current default screen cannot be replaced by a split screen of which the top half says "TOUCH SCREEN TO PURCHASE TICKETS" which would take customers to the current default screen otherwise a "FORTHCOMING CHANGES" scrolling lower half screen would display a brief message about the changes and how to get the details i.e. website reference.

Similarly the three line RTI displays at our stops out in the sticks could have a scrolling message informing of forthcoming changes and website reference, they seem to be able to do it for bank holidays. For example www.travelwest.info/august2019.
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LiskeardRich
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« Reply #8 on: August 29, 2019, 08:02:00 am »

72 days notice to local authority is required to make changes, these become public with minimum 28 days notice

"Become public" can be a bit interesting.   Notices appear from VOSA online that a route or timetable is being amended, listed (as far as I have seen) by date of filing and members of the public can pay £3.50 for anything more than the "it's changing" headline.   Online and onstop timetables (where they exist) tend to be very late updated to avoid customers turning up to use a bus at a new time before it's running at that time.   It is often possible for local activities to get better and more complete data - there's nothing to say that the bus companies must not tell their (potential) customers and indeed it's typically in its interest, countered sometimes by a desire to minimise negative reaction to negative changed and to minimise reaction opportunities to competitors.

Traveline normally adds the forthcoming timetable within a few days of the info VOSA online appearing
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grahame
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« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2019, 08:13:46 am »

Traveline normally adds the forthcoming timetable within a few days of the info VOSA online appearing

Ah yes - silly me overlooked that one.    That's the one that's caused panic on the D2 Bath to Frome route which drops from every 30 minutes to every hour during the day as from next week.   What the TravelLine timetable doesn't tell you is that there's still bus every 30 minutes from Bath - but every alternate one is now known as D2A with a varied routing (other way around the loop?) in Frome.
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grahame
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« Reply #10 on: November 21, 2020, 11:59:40 am »

From Lyme Online

Quote
New bus timetable improves connections with Axminster station

BUS operator First Wessex has introduced a revised winter timetable for the X51 and X53 services which aligns better with the train timetable at Axminster station.

The revision comes following a retiming of an early morning journey of the X53 service in September, to benefit customers needing to catch the connecting train at Axminster.

The winter timetable, which takes effect tomorrow (Sunday), marks the first time in many years that the X53 will continue to operate seven days a week during the winter months.

Just as in previous winter timetables, the X51 will operate Mondays to Saturdays only.

The bus operator said it used local feedback for the improvements to the X51 and X53 services so bus customers travelling to and from Axminster station will experience improved connections between the bus and train timetables.

Carol Sim, operations manager for First Wessex said: ?We saw an opportunity to improve journeys for customers needing to catch a connection train in Axminster station.

?The changes we are bringing in are the result of feedback we have received from the community, and we would like to take the opportunity to thank everyone who contacted us with suggestions.?

It makes such enormous sense to improve bus to / from rail connections.
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bradshaw
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« Reply #11 on: November 21, 2020, 01:03:45 pm »

I would agree, on weekdays Bridport will have an hourly service to/from Axminster, with alternate services X51 to Dorchester and X53 to Weymouth. The Sunday service on the X53 to Weymouth is to be welcomed as it also serves a number of villages on the way, whereas the X51 does not.
We also have a better service Bridport to Yeovil via Crewkerne since September.

https://news.dorsetcouncil.gov.uk/2020/08/26/service-6-bus-bridport-beaminster-yeovil/
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