A A A2000 Bus Tour weekend: a report    

This is a more or less contemporaneous report of the 2000 weekend:

  Friday 29 April 2000

An excellent visit to the Queensway tunnel.  Started at the entrance to George's Dock Building, walked up two floors to the museum and the control room and then kept walking down and down.  The scale of the thing was stunning - Peter Arch (Engineering Manager, who showed us round) compared the ventilation fans with paddle steamer paddles with some justification.  A quick step out onto the walkway at the side of the road deck made you realise just how cramped things are down there - lanes 9ft wide for buses of 8'-2.5".   Then below the road deck to the space where the trams were planned to run.  Of transport interest down there is a wonderful contraption built on the chassis of a 1950s Morris van - the chassis is supported on legs about six feet off the ground with the axle driving a chain to make the wheels go round.  Peter Arch was very non committal when some nark asked where Lewis Lesley should stick his trams.  (For those who don't know, there is a private sector proposal to build a six route tram network in Liverpool, with one route going across to the Wirral.)

  Saturday 30 April 2000

Warrington Borough Transport 96 (F96STB), a Dennis Dominator, took us from Liverpool for a tea break in Baslow and then on to Barrow Hill roundhouse, now home to about 30 locos, mostly diesel but with some steam and some ac electric.  A small shunter gave our passengers (between 30-33 depending on the time of day) a run along the line.  From there to Ruddington and their collection of buses in various states of restoration.  Our party (well most of it) had a ride round on an ex Barton lowbridge PD2.  Finally the Great Central, a tour of the shed and a return trip to Leicester North and back, with the LUPTS TOUR headboard displayed (probably to the annoyance of lineside photographers - how sad).  I can confirm Dave's report of my consumption of an omelette on the outward journey and a toasted tea cake on the return - both excellent.  Chip stop in Uttoxter on the way back north, once Jonathan managed to spot one.  Several LUPTS members were led astray on return to Liverpool by the landlord of one city centre establishment only being prepared to serve full pints after 23:45.

  Sunday 1 May 2000

With signs of fragility on the part of some, 17 assembled at the Tudor Rose on the Wirral.  Good food but don't ever go there if you're in a hurry.   Various options from there:  Go home for a sleep; double headed class 37s along the North Wales Coast (Su/BHO, due to finish at end of May); Llandudno for the Transport Festival.  Those who selected the latter option managed to get themselves gridlocked on the Great Orme while the after effects of the tram crash were sorted out - as far as I'm aware, no LUPTS people were involved.   (For those who didn't hear, the two trams on the upper section ended up on the same track at the passing point, with not unexpected consequences.  20 or so slight injuries.)

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Last updated: 31 May 2002

Charles Roberts/LUPTS 2002