28 June 2018
|First bus of the day: The rather small and|
uncomfortable service 42.
Still accompanied by Hugh, I left York at 10.15 on Transdev's service 42. The 42 is the least frequent and least direct of the various buses one could catch between York and Selby, but regular blog readers won't be surprised at my choice!
This "back road" route takes in Naburn and Cawood, crossing the River Ouse at the latter and enters Selby via a diversion through a large housing estate that at one time would have justified its own regular service.
Selby is best known for its Abbey and its large Monday market, but we didn't visit the
|River Ouse at Selby|
The bus station rather surprised me. I remembered it from visits many years ago but as so many towns have lost their bus stations altogether and those that remain have been allowed to get very run down, I didn't expect that it would still have a cafe, toilets and an Inspectors and enquiry office (although that's now a "Control Hub"!)
I hadn't expected to find a double-decker on Arriva's service 401 on to Goole, which took us
through some pretty empty and uninspiring scenery to that town. We had half-an-hour in Goole, most of which was spent looking for the stop for our onward bus as the main terminus is hidden up a side street from the town centre. I'd been looking forward to this one. On a number of visits to Goole in the 1970s and 80s I'd noticed, amidst all the frequent interurban buses from places like Doncaster and Selby, a timetable for a much less frequent route to Scunthorpe. Operated by Lincolnshire Road Car Co. (itself a piece of exotica in urban Goole) it promised visits to "Ousefleet" and "Swinefleet" en-route to deepest Lincolnshire. The infrequent nature of the service meant I'd never had the chance to ride it and I was pleasantly surprised to see it still existed and even more so that it was now operated by the East Yorkshire Motor Services, which would be an equally exotic sight in Scunthorpe!
|Arriva's 401 to Goole at Selby|
Service 361 left Goole via the docks and "Old Goole" and then followed the Humber estuary. I'd been looking forward to views of the river - and perhaps a glimpse of the shipping that still comes up to Goole, but the high flood walls made that difficult, even from the top of the double-decker. Swinefleet turned out to be a disappointment - all I can remember of the village is two closed-down pubs - and some time after Ousefleet we turned south to leave the Humber and follow the Trent, soon entering Lincolnshire at Addingfleet and, arguably, also crossing the line from the north of England to the midlands.
Lincolnshire is second only to Yorkshire in area when it comes to English counties. Like its neighbour it was divided into three parts and, until 1974, had three "county councils": "Holland", "Lindsay" and "Kesteven". Nevertheless, the inhabitants of all three have always considered themselves residents of "Lincolnshire".
|As a passenger, I couldn't get a photo of the 361 crossing |
the Trent at Althorpe, but here is an image of a
Lincolnshire Road Car bus doing so at Easter 1979.
Our double-decker's capacity was certainly not needed on this run (although no doubt a load of schoolchildren would be picked up on the return run) and this was a very rural - and very flat - part of the journey; the only village of any size being Luddington, after which we crossed the Trent at Althorpe Bridge, near Keadby and were soon in Scunthorpe.
Fortunately, we had only 15 minutes here and we needed a few of those to find out whereabouts in the wide-open spaces of the bus station our last bus of the day would leave from - there being no overall information post anywhere. We had a choice of buses to Lincoln: service 103 was the most direct and the first to leave but had the disadvantage of being a rather crowded single-decker. So we took a chance on service 100, leaving ten minutes later and following a more roundabout route. We were rewarded by the arrival of a double-decker, painted in Lincolnshire county council's "Inter Connect" livery to show that it was operating on part of the county's trunk bus network.
|Last bus of the day: Service 100 to Lincoln|
It must have been a posh school as the children were quiet and well-behaved on the way to Saxilby (which I visited on my boat Starcross in 2012 en-route to Boston) after which we followed the Fosdyke Navigation all the way past the Pyewipe and into Lincoln arriving at the city's brand-new bus station.
|Evening sun on Lincoln cathedral.|
Hugh left me here to return to Knaresborough by train and I stayed in the bus station to catch a bus "up the hill" to the area around the castle and cathedral, where my hotel for the night was located. Unfortunately, despite its newness Lincoln bus station is not any better than Scunthorpe when it comes to finding a bus for the first time and I had to resort to using the Bus Times app on my phone to find one, but they are frequent enough (at least before 6pm) and I was saved a trudge up Lincoln's aptly-named "Steep Hill"
More images of Lincoln
More images of Lincoln