30 May 2007

Enviro Lynxes, North Notts

Today saw the launch of six brand new vehicles on the roads of north Nottinghamshire. Operated by Stagecoach's Worksop depot, the four ADL Darts and two ADL Tridents all carry Enviro 200/400 bodies respectively and are owned by Notts CC. Both Tridents carry special "Airport Lynx" branding for new services 29/X29 (Retford - Harworth - Bircotes - Bawtry - Robin Hood Airport) and two of the 4 Darts carry a similar branding for new service X30 (Worksop - Harworth - Bircotes - Bawtry - Robin Hood Airport).

That said, the branding applied doesn't specifically refer to route numbers but consists of red and blue arrows between termini (Worksop/Retford/Robin Hood Airport). These four vehicles carry a totally different livery to the standard Stagecoach scheme. They have red frontages and green rears with a mix of green, red and white throughout the main body of each vehicle, and with a huge silhouette of Robin Hood's arm firing an arrow from a bow at the rear.

The two remaining Darts have a similar non-standard livery, not too dissimilar to the above vehicles, though with a light green front instead of the red. They have Local Lynx branding applied, again with no specific route numbers mentioned. I understand that these two vehicles are to be allocated to Service 23/27 (Retford Town Service & Retford - Misson) and Services 31/31A (Worksop - Tickhill/Doncaster). As soon as is possible, "Local Lynx" branding is being applied to all Alexander-bodied Dennis Darts allocated to Worksop depot. Local Lynx is the term Notts CC use to promote their services that are operated with their assistance.

The frequencies for the new services 29/X29 and X30 are excellent. The 29/X29 combination requires 2 Tridents and operates from 0605 from both ends of the route until midnight at a 30-min frequency and replaces the much lesser frequency of Service 29 alone, which didn't call into Robin Hood Airport. Service X30 is even better with buses from 0345 until 0135 - that means this service specifically only has 2:10 without a service! This route replaces a large section of Service 21, which was withdrawn as a result of its implementation, and alterations to Services 22, 25, 27 and 31/31A saw the withdrawal of Service 20 left no area without a replacement service.

Notts CC also went into partnership with Stagecoach in producing a network map of north Notts, encompassing all services operated by all operators in the Retford/Gainsborough/Worksop/Robin Hood Airport section. Even services operated by Veolia, who took a lot of RoadCar services, are shown. The map is in RoadCar style with full timetables of all services on the rear, again a typically RoadCar move. All Stagecoach services are shown with the exception of Retford town services and Gainsborough depot's routes are also given equal prominence. A superb piece of literatue.

The vehicles are numbered 19131/2 (Tridents) and 36001-4 (Darts) and photos can be found at the top of this entry.