Monday 20 August 2012

Sunday Lost Scenes - Monday 20th August

This week's Sunday Lost Scenes comes from an area in the spotlight at the present time...

First Devon & Cornwall 52516 - S516RWP - Poughill (near Bude) - 3rd August 2006

First in Devon and Cornwall will soon be pulling out of North Devon altogether. They'll only have one service left into North Cornwall too - as the Plymouth operated tendered route 76 will continue into Bude. From 2002, operations in Bude have been cut back hugely, and the most recent route to have already passed to another operator is route 128 - the Poughill to Stratton town service.

S516RWP was new to First Midland Red in 1998, and brought massive improvements to the Worcester city services. In 2004-5, a large number of the 64-strong batch of Mercedes-Benz Varios moved to Devon & Cornwall. 52516 was allocated to Bude outstation for most of its time in the south - it was the first FDC bus I photographed in 2004, and was still in Bude in 2006. It was always identifiable by the fact the number dot-matrix display didn't work from the time it arrived until at least this view in 2006. The bus has long since departed the fleet, and the 128 was won by Stagecoach in Devon last year, who will  operate at least 4* routes into Cornwall when they add the X9 to their network. 

Also gone are the surroundings. The T-junction is still present, but the post office has since closed and is, on my last visit, now a residential property. Also, the Cornish sun seems to have been out very little in the past few years also...

* Stagecoach services into Cornwall will include: the X9 Bude - Exeter, 85 early AM outbound/late PM inbound Bude - Barnstaple via Holsworthy & Bideford, 128 Poughill - Stratton via Bude and the 319 Bude - Barnstaple via Hartland and Bideford.

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