Today's blog entry will recount some of the snowy scenes around the south from January's snow fall, now two weeks ago. Snow fell throughout Friday 18th and Saturday 19th January. The main disruption was caused as the snow fell through the middle of the day, causing all buses between Southampton and Portsmouth to cease operation for a few hours, or longer. The majority of services were back up and running on the Saturday, after the relevant highways forces had done an excellent job making the roads safe.
My first stop was Cosham. I travelled up on the train - the stopper from Southampton. Under the emergency timetables, Salisbury's Class 158s and 159s run the Southampton - Portsmouth stopper, which gives the opportunity of riding one of these away from their usual area, or from their peak timetabled operations. The first shot of the day was Stagecoach's 34414 (GX53MWE), pictured on the new route 20 extension to Southsea. Compare this scene to three years ago, and you can see the impact and improvement of the road clearing (we did also have less snow this time!).
My customary shot from Portchester railway bridge - this shows Dart 46322 (M322YOT) operating staff shuttles. This is the same, now infamous, working that decapitated the double decker last week.
On Portsea Island, the majority of snow had cleared by midday Saturday, and nearly all services were back operating their routes. Indeed, the first First services started up again in Portsmouth at around 2.30 on Friday - the earliest in the South. Stagecoach had their buses off the road for an even shorter time. Here is 27642 (GX10HBU), heading along Southsea seafront for Brighton.
I returned to base and then went west, where the remaining snowfall was heavier. Pictured at Curdridge, here is First Hampshire's 42134 (S634KTP) heading for Fareham on route 26.
One of the last areas to get their regular services back was Hedge End railway station. Here First Southampton Volvo B7TL/Wright 37164 (HY07FSU) waits for passengers, still with a lot of slush on the ground.
This was not the worst snow across the south in recent years - indeed it was beginning to melt on Friday evening. As such, disruption was reduced and the majority of buses were back to normal by Saturday. Let's see what the next snowfal brings...