Sunday, 21 February 2016

A Ribble farewell - Sunday 3rd April

Stagecoach, as successors to Ribble, are pulling out of the Fleetwood and Thornton Cleveleys area and their final day will be Saturday 2nd April. Then, from Monday 4th April the former 84 route, and bits of the 74 and 87, will be replaced with a new service 24 and extension of service 22 operated by Catch22Bus.
So, on the day in between, Sunday 3rd April, to commemorate the end of the Ribble era in the area, the LTT will be running free bus services from Cleveleys to Fleetwood, and from Cleveleys to Thornton and  Poulton between 11.50 and 14.50, using the LTT's preserved Ribble buses 366, 1805 and 1997.  The main centre of operations will be Cleveleys Bus Station and the town is lively even on a Sunday with several cafes on the main street.
The event is sponsored by Catch22Bus and the journeys will operate over the routes of their new services 22 & 24 which start the following day. See for more details.

Leyland Lion soon to roar again!

It has been ten years since the oldest bus in the LTT collection last carried passengers and it was back in July 2008 that the bus passed into the collection from Blackpool Transport. In the summer of last year, Lytham Lion 34 was paint stripped and then treated to a repaint in original style blue and white livery.
Solving some on-going mechanical problems has prevented 34's reappearance thus far, but one of the issues on the vacuum braking system has now been solved. Two hairline cracks in a brake pipe were found and repaired but the biggest loss of vacuum was found at a silicon hose which looks like it had been used to replace a cracked piece of original pipe. Unfortunately, when "vacuum" was escaping from the pipe as it was sucking in the flexible pipe inwards & restricting the flow - the opposite of what you would observe on air brakes. There are still a few other issues to sort out, but hopefully the Lion will soon be roaring again!

LTT Catch Up....

Two restoration projects are currently being progressed in between other commitments. A full restoration of Blackpool PD2 No.346 has been started and the first phase has involved stripping of the lower deck panelling and saloon floor ready for chassis cleaning, de-rusting and painting. This has revealed that the vehicle is generally in a sound condition, although complete renewal of the cantilevered rear platform framing will be required.
The other restoration project now making progress is Lytham Leyland Atlantean No.77 which last carried passengers back in 1998 after it had received a quick repaint back into Lytham blue. The bus requires platform renewal and a front end rebuild. It has recently been stripped down for replacement of the fibreglass "Nottingham" style front, which has revealed some corrosion in the steel sections that this is secured to. An inspection on the body lift shows that some steel supports ahead of the front axle also require attention to reduce excessive bouncing and body movement.