Tuesday, 23 April 2019

Bank Holiday services return to southern Busway

Yes, I know that Good Friday and Easter Monday have been and gone, so apologies in advance for this retrospective posting.

One (less-than-desirable?) feature of Sundays and Bank Holidays is that there are no services on the southern portion of the Busway, between Cambridge Railway Station and the Biomedical Campus. As I've commented elsewhere, it seems that operators (and one particularly large operator locally) are keen to lock as many buses as possible away in their depots. Bank Holidays are supposed to be like Sundays (tell that to the 30-35 passengers on a "U" service at 1925 on Good Friday evening)!

Well, Whippet broke with that shabby "tradition" this Easter, and ran a full "P" service on both Friday and Monday. Which means that there were Bank Holiday services on that southern stretch for the first time since... well, I think it's the first time ever, but stand open to correction from someone with a better memory than mine.

Unfortunately - and didn't you know there was going to be a "but" to this good news - it helps if people know those services are running. According to Traveline there were no services on this route on either day. The Whippet website, and the print "P" timetable (plus its online equivalent) made no mention of Bank Holiday services. All I could eventually track down was a single tweet from Whippet HQ informing its followers what was happening over the holiday weekend. It's possible they also showed up in apps offering real-time operating data (e.g. the UK Bus Checker, or Traveline's own).

So 10/10 for daring to offer the service. But a rather lower score for making sure people know that the buses are out on the road, waiting to be used.

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