Tag Archive: Newcastle


The old 231 was an epic journey between Newcastle and Hartlepool that stopped everywhere and took nigh on two hours to complete. There was a limited-stop express service that also operated between Newcastle and Hartlepool (X5), so I don’t think that this service was aimed at anyone who needed to commute between the two areas. But, as mentioned, the X5 was a limited-stop service that stopped only at ‘the timing points shown’ without any additional stops. So if you lived in a village/community that the X5 did not stop at; then you were stuck with the 231.

Both services operated a similar route between Houghton-le-Spring and Hartlepool operating via Peterlee and Blackhall Rocks. Before the routes merged so to speak, the X5 operated the exact same route as the current ‘Red Arrows’ X1 services does now via Washington, whilst the 231 operated via Chester-le-Street and Birtley. The 231 started/terminated at Worswick Street whilst the X5 operated from Eldon Square via Worswick Street although in later years both services went to Eldon Square once Worswick Street had closed down. Both services were operated jointly by United and Northern.

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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.

I think the title is pretty self-explanatory. See how it compares to now. In Gateshead, there’s no Interchange yet and West Street is a bi-directional as is The High Level Bridge. Sunderland has changed somewhat in recent years but other than that, things are more or less the same as they are now.

The ‘301’ has seen many changes throughout its route history but it has always maintained its status as a ‘cross-tyne’ service. This 1979 version saw it operate from Whitley Bay along its current route (now ‘coaster’ services 1/2 before its recent re-routing through Marden Estate) to Gateshead, then on to Lobley Hill via Bensham Road/Lobley Hill Road terminating at the ‘west-side’ of the estates there. The ‘302’ has seem lots of changes too but the service always seems to integrate with the ‘301’ in some fashion. In 1979 it was no different, operating from Whitley Bay to Redesdale Park via North Shields and Wallsend.

The last example of the Newcastle/Gateshead inter-urban services. The 66/67 ran between Benton Estate into Newcastle, across to Gateshead, then operated the Dunston Loop. The Dunston Loop or Circular has had a few different numbered services operating it. After the 66/67, it was the 58/59, then the 67/68, and finally the 64/65 (with an added 164/165 variation of it) before being absorbed into services that operated in the West of Gateshead. I believe that nowadays it has been amalgamated into the 49/49A/49B/49C set of services as well as the 95/95A.

Here are the timetables for the 26/27 bus service that ran along the current ’30’ route from Fawdon into Newcastle. then along Durham Road into Low Fell. The 26 terminated at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and operated, what was once the ’92’ route (then the M31/M32), via Church Road and Wynbury Road. And the ’27’ operated via Beacon Lough Road and Easedale Gardens into Wrekenton.

I was going to post these old inter conurbation routes between Newcastle and Gateshead in some sort of order. But it dawned on me after posting the 24/25 timetable that the ’10’ was indeed operational in 1979. All services are operated jointly by PTE and Northern.

The ‘8’ more or less operates the same route as either the 15 or 15A (I can’t remember) does now between Newcastle and Kenton Bar Estate. It then operates via the current ‘Fab 57’ route to Fewster Square where it terminates.

The ‘9’ operates via the current 31 route between Montagu Estate and Newcastle then the ‘Fab 56’ route to Springwell Estate.

The ’10’ operates similar to its current route between North Kenton and Town (except it goes via Great North Road instead of Claremont Road) then, like the ‘9’ operates along the current ‘Fab 56’ route to Springwell Estate.

Another ‘Cross-Tyne’ service between Newcastle and Gateshead. The 24/25 started in North Kenton and followed more or less the same route between North Kenton and Grainger Street as the 10/11 do now (before they were diverted to serve the University and RVI). When they got to Gateshead, they followed the classic 24/25 routes to their respective destinations before they were merged into one 24 service and then absorbed into the Coaster-branded ‘2’.