Tag Archive: East


I recently received a request asking about a 588 service which ran to Washington. This is the only 588 service which I can find amongst my collection:

588

As you can see, it did not run as far as Washington in 1979. By 1985 the service had disappeared completely, presumably absorbed into the 540/541 services which ran between Monkton Lane – Jarrow – Harton Hospital – Seaburn (540)/Horsley Hill (541). If anyone has more information about the 588 service, then please feel free to post a comment.

As I don’t really update this blog that much now, I would like to take the opportunity to make you aware of another site which makes these old timetables available to view. North East Buses (link: http://www.northeastbuses.co.uk ) is an enthusiast site which encourages debate about not only buses, but all forms of public transport, past and present, in the North East of England. Unlike other bus enthusiast groups/sites, this is open for anyone to view and contribute. The forum contains a section called ‘The Bygone Era’ where, upon joining, a vast array of old timetables are available to peruse and download. Check it out!!

[Message to Brandon: Please feel free to ‘steal’ anything I’ve posted here. Bus timetables (and anything else which belonged in the Public Domain), ultimately, belong to the public, not the collector!]

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In all of the Tyne and Wear PTE I’ve seen up until 1985, the 234 was also known simpy as ‘Trimdon’. Operated by Trimdon Motor Services, this bus operated between Houghton-le-Spring and Stockton via Salters Lane (which included the villages of Haswell and Wingate), through the Trimdoms and Fishburn to Sedgefield and down the A177 to Stockton. In later years, this service was extended from Houghton into Sunderland and operated by United after TMS sold their business to them.

Here is another service that still exists albeit with a different service number. The 230 between Sunderland and Hartlepool has now been replaced by services 23/23A/23B/23C. Some of these routes still traverse the entire route whilst others terminate at Peterlee. The service is still ran jointly by Go North East and Arriva North East (or Northern and United as they were then known) which is something of an oddity these days. I’m not sure how this arrangement was handled in 1979 but in 2011 it is hugely simplified with Arriva running the day service, and GNE operating on Evening and Sundays.

The route between Sunderland and Durham is now a flagship route for Go North East’s ‘Prince Bishops’ branded 20/20X services. This route has always attracted a high frequency of bus services but once upon a time at least two buses an hour used to extend beyond Durham to Bishop Auckland.

Wheatley Hill once had quite a few services operating into Sunderland. The ‘215’ is another example of this. This service largely operated through Wingate, Shotton Colliery then onto Peterlee and up through Easington but a small number of journeys used to operate via Castle Eden too.

Yet another bus operating between Sunderland and Middlesbrough. This one operates via Peterlee,  Wheatley Hill, The Trimdons and Sedgefield before going down the A177 into Stockton and into Middlesbrough.

Moving on to longer distanced services now, starting with the ‘2xx’ series which revolves around buses operating from the Sunderland area into Co. Durham and Cleveland. The first example is the 212. This service ran between Sunderland and Middlesbrough via Ryhope, Peterlee, Wingate and Stockton following much of the same route as Arriva’s 21A service and, until recently, Go North East’s 211.

This service has never really changed with one exception. In 1979, it was operated jointly by United and Tyne & Wear PTE.

More United services in the western suburbs of Newcastle. This time we have the 84 which operated from Marlborough Crescent to Throckley via Sandyford and Westerhope. And the 85/86 which operated a circular route serving Slatyford, West Denton and Denton Burn. These routes have now been largely absorbed into the Stagecoach operated 11 and 39 services. Arriva North East, a successor to United, have recently been awarded a contract by Nexus to operate a route between Throckley and West Denton. Along with another Nexus contracted service, the 4, Arriva North East/United Automobile Services once again have a presence in West Denton after years and years of inactivity.

United Automobile Services (now Arriva North East) once ran a few services through the western suburbs of Newcastle and that is the theme for the next few posts. We begin with the 82 & 83, two services that were later replaced by the Tyne & Wear PTE/Blue Bus Services/Newcastle Busways operated X82/X83 services,  then amalgamated into the singular X82 route that is currently operated by Stagecoach Newcastle between Throckley and Newcastle.

One noticeable change to this service is that it once terminated/started from Marlborough Crescent Bus Station.  Now it operates direct from Eldon Square Bus Concourse which is more convenient for shoppers as opposed to a now demolished bus station near a busy train station which, at the time, would have been better for transport links. Another change is the curtailment of services to Throckley. Heddon is still still served a a couple of long-distance services but Ouston Camp (also known as Albemarle Barracks) does not have a bus service anymore. I guess if you’re a squaddie there now, a car is essential.