Friday, 17 August 2012

A tale of bus routes and chaos.
We're presently moored up in Market Harborough, a delightly  town, with good shopping and an interesting bus service.
Yesterday I took a walk into town, and noticed that there was a bus stop on the side of the road which faced into town, so concluded that we could get a bus when we wanted to do the "big shop".
This morning we set off, not knowing the time table but hoping it wouldn't be too long.
When we got to the stop there was a notice on it saying that due to road works it was not in use, please use the one on Fairfield Road.
Well it wasn't too far so we wandered along to it and waited. Soon around the corner came 2 buses, one an X something, the other a small local style bus. So we let the big one past only to see the small one turn again up another small road and stop. I legged it over to the bus and asked if it went onto town. Yes it did. So we boarded, but noticed that there was no bus stop sign where it had stopped. We were told that you just had to know where to flag it down!!
When we got to town I asked the driver where to get the bus back to Union Wharf and he said "Right here, same number 33".
After doing all we wanted to in town we went back to stop and looking at the time table all it said was "hourly", no time, just hourly.
After about 10 minutes along came a 33, so we boarded and asked for Union Wharf, the driver said "Don't go there" What! That's where we picked up the 33 to get to town. "Well, this one goes to ......... but then comes back here and heads towards Bowden.
Now, that was at least in the right direction so we got on and hoped to recognise the area to get off.
The bus duly went out, and came back without going near where we wanted to go. Back in town again the bus changed drivers and this one said "Ah, this bus does 4 separate routes, where are you going?"
Union Wharf, says I. "Don't know that" he says. Leicester Road? I tried. "Yes, eventually". So we stayed on and duly, in the fullness of time we passed Union Wharf. A large sign declares  "Union Wharf" and yet none of the drivers we spoke to knew where it was!
As we got off I said to the driver, This is Union Wharf, the sign's just there. He replied," we call it Logan".
What a system! Speaking to locals THEY even say it's chaotic, and sometimes have to ride around 3 of the 4 routes to get to where they are want to be.
What ever happened to bus drivers who knew their route intimately?
Rant over.

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