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Stagecoach in Preston is a network of bus routes running within the City of Prestonmarker and into the surrounding area. It was founded in 2009 after Stagecoach Group acquired Preston Bus that was founded in 1904. They now operate from the main depot on Deepdale Road and their other depot on Selbourne Street.

History

Preston Bus was founded in 1904 as Preston District Travel, and as was bought from the local authority by its employees in 1993 as part of deregulation. It became a limited company.

In 2006, Stagecoach North West set up various services using a fleet of new & old Optare Solos, Dennis Enviro 400s and new & old Dennis Dart SLFs in order to compete with Preston Bus. They were branded as "Preston Citi" Competition grew into a bus war. Stagecoach offered lower fares on the busiest routes.

Both companies accused each other of unprofessional behaviour, with some Stagecoach drivers reported to have thrown eggs at Preston Buses.

On 10 June 2008, both companies were agreed to a code of practice by the traffic commissioner. Competition continued, Stagecoach operating routes within Preston and Preston Bus operating a route between Preston and Penwortham.

On 30 December 2008, it was announced that Stagecoach had approached Preston Bus to negotiate a possible sale. This was agreed and on 23 January 2009 Stagecoach North West purchased Preston Bus for £10.4 million. From March 2009, the combined network of routes was rebranded as Stagecoach in Preston.

On 28 May 2009, the Office of Fair Trading announced that it was referring the purchase of Preston Bus by Stagecoach to the Competition Commission. Their provisional findings are that the purchase has reduced competition and may potentially harm the interests of passengers. Possible remedies may involve the sale of part or all of the business, measures to encourage new entry by other operators, as well as controls on fares and requirements to maintain service levels. The final report is due by 12 November 2009.

On the 12 November 2009 The Competition Commission submitted that Stagecoach would have a time limit in which it had to sell many of its routes and one of the two depots to a competing company. It hasn't been decided about the fleet yet. There have been complaints about this.

Routes

Below are the routes currently operated by Stagecoach in Preston:
No. From To Via Fast Fare/Gives Change Main Bus(es) Used Main Frequency Notes
citi 1 Preston Bus Station Stand 69 Longridge Post Office Ribbleton Avenue, Grimsargh Gives Change Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 10 minutes run alongside service 11 in time providing 5 minute freq. till Grange
citi 2 Preston Bus Station Stand 61 Southport Hutton, Longton, Tarleton, Hesketh Bank Gives Change Alexander Dennis Enviro 400, Optare Esteem 20 minutes peak, 30 minutes 9am-4pm.
2B Preston Bus Station Stand 61 Ormskirk Bus Station Stand 6 New Longton, Longton, Tarleton, Burscough Gives Change Optare Solo 1 hour Subsidised by Lancs County Council
citi 3 Preston Bus Station Stand 65 Penwortham Cop Lane Gives Change Optare Esteem, Dennis Dart SLF, Optare Versa, MAN 18.220 7/8 minutes
citi 3A Preston Bus Station Stand 63 Penwortham Clive Road Broadgate, Hill Road South, Central Drive Fast Fare Optare Solo 1 hour Subsidised By Lancs County Council.
citi 3B Preston Bus Station Stand 63 New Longton Broadgate, Hill Road South, Whitestake Fast Fare Optare Solo 1 hour Subs. by LCC. Run alongside 3A to provide 30 min freq. till Penwortham Booths.
4 Preston Bus Station Stand 12 Chipping Garstang Rd, Watling St Rd, Royal Preston Hospital, Wychnor, Woodplumpton, Whittingham, Longridge Post Office Gives Change Optare Solo 1 hour Network Ribble Valley. Subsidised by Lancashire County Council
citi 7 Preston Bus Station Stand 16 Brookfield Garstang Road, Watling Street Road Fast Fare Optare Solo, Leyland Olympian 15 minutes Easy access buses aren't used only 4 specified times a day.
citi 8 Preston Bus Station Stand 73 Moor Nook Ribbleton Avenue Gives Change Optare Solo 10 minutes
citi 9 Preston Bus Station Stand 74 Moor Nook New Hall Lane, Miller Road Gives Change Optare Esteem, Dennis Dart SLF, MAN 18.220 10 minutes Run alongside service 8 in time providing service to Moor Nook 5 min freq
citi 11 Preston Bus Station Stand 71 Gamull Lane Ribbleton Avenue, Grange Estate Fast Fare Dennis Trident, Optare Esteem, Scania Omnidekka, Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 10 minutes run alongside service 1 in time providing 5 min freq. till Grange
citi 14 Preston Bus Station Stand 18 Fairfax Road St Paul's Road, St George's Road, St Gregory's Road, Holme Slack Fast Fare Optare Solo 15 minutes
citi 16 Preston Bus Station Stand 75 Farringdon Park New Hall Lane Gives Change Optare Esteem, Dennis Trident, Dennis Dart SLF, Alexander Dennis Enviro 400, MAN 18.220 10 minutes
citi 19 Preston Bus Station Stand 19 Royal Preston Hospital Hospital Turning Circle Deepdale Road, Watling Street Road Gives Change Optare Esteem, Dennis Dart SLF, Alexander Dennis Enviro 400, Optare Versa, MAN 18.220 10 minutes Continues as service 22 to Preston City Centre
citi 19A Preston Bus Station Stand 21 Royal Preston Hospital Main Entrance Deepdale Road, Watling Street Road, Sharoe Green Lane, Hospital Turning Circle, Brooklands Estate Fast Fare Optare Solo 10 minutes Run alongside 19 to provide service to RPH via Watling St Rd every 5 minutes
citi 22 Preston Bus Station Stand 22 Royal Preston Hospital Main Entrance Adelphi Street, Plunington Road, Black Bull Lane Gives Change Optare Esteem, Dennis Dart SLF, Alexander Dennis Enviro 400, Optare Versa, MAN 18.220 10 minutes Continues as service 19 to Preston City Centre
citi 23 Preston Bus Station Stand 23 Fulwood Asda Adelphi Street, Plunington Road, Black Bull Lane, Royal Preston Hospital "Turning Circle", Sherwood Fast Fare Dennis Trident, Scania Omnidekka, Optare Esteem 10 minutes Run alongside 22 to provide service to RPH via Plungington Rd every 5 minutes
citi 29 Preston Bus Station Stand 58 Frenchwood Manchester Road Fast Fare Optare Solo 30 minutes Subsidised by Lancashire County Council
citi 31 Preston Bus Station Stand 33 Savick Lane Ends Fast Fare Optare Solo 15 minutes
citi 35 Preston Bus Station Stand 33 Tanterton Fylde Road, Lane Ends, Tag Lane Fast Fare Dennis Trident, Scania Omnidekka, Optare Esteem 7/8 minutes
citi 44 Preston Bus Station Stand 35 Ingol Dunbar Road Plungington Road, Eldon Street, Lane Ends, Tag Lane, Redcar Avenue Fast Fare Optare Solo 15 minutes
61 Preston Bus Station Stand 66 Blackpool Talbot Road T6 Lane Ends, Blackpool Road, Lea, Kirkham Gives Change Volvo Olympian, Volvo B10M, Dennis Trident, Optare Versa 30 minutes Fylde Coastliner. Easy Access Buses sometimes used.
68 Preston Bus Station Stand 68 Blackpool Talbot Road T6 Tulketh Road, Blackpool Road, Lea, Freckleton, Warton, Lytham, St Annes Gives Change Volvo Olympian, Volvo B10M, Dennis Trident, Optare Versa 15 minutes Fylde Coastliner. Easy Access Buses sometimes used
citi 81 Preston Bus Station Stand 56 Conway Drive Lane Ends, Mill Lane Gives Change Optare Solo 1 hour Subsidised by Lancashire County Council
citi 87 Preston Bus Station Stand 25 Lea Dodney Drive Lane Ends, Blackpool Road, Larches Avenue Fast Fare Optare Solo 30 minutes Non- Easy Access Buses rarely used.
Orbit 88A Preston Bus Station Stand 17 Preston Bus Station Stand 17 Deepdale Road, Brookfield, Blue Bell Way, Fulwood Asda, Sherwood Way, Royal Preston Hospital, Cadley Causeway, Tag Lane, Cottam, Larches, Mariners Way Fast Fare Optare Solo 15 minutes Preston orbit anti-clockwise
Orbit 88C Preston Bus Station Stand 27 Preston Bus Station Stand 27 Mariners Way, Larches, Cottam, Tag Lane, Cadley Causeway, Royal Preston Hospital, Sherwood Way, Fulwood Asda, Blue Bell Way, Brookfield, Deepdale Road Fast Fare Optare Solo 15 minutes Preston orbit clockwise
citi 89 Preston Bus Station Stand 25 Lea Dodney Drive Mariners Way, Pedders Lane, Blackpool Road, Larches Avenue Fast Fare Leyland Olympian, Optare Solo 30 minutes Easy Access Buses (the Solos) used 30% of the time
113 Preston Bus Station Stand 59 Wigan Bus Station Bamber Bridge, Lostock Hall, Farington, Leyland, Eccleston, Standish Gives Change Optare Solo 1 hour Subsidised by Lancashire County Council
150
151
Preston Bus Station Stand 6 Bamber Bridge Higher Walton, Gregson Lane Gives Change Optare Solo 30 minutes Evening and Sunday journeys subsidised by Lancashire County Council
X2 Preston Bus Station Stand 63 Liverpool Queen Square A59, Tarleton, Southport, Formby, Bootle Gives Change Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 30 minutes Listed as Best UK Express Bus Service 2009
X59 Preston Bus Station Stand 11 Blackburn Bus Station L Salmesbury, Mellor Brook, Beardwood Gives Change Volvo Olympian, Coaches, Optare Solo 1 hour Also branded as Stagecoach Express , Optare Solos used during evenings.
X61 Blackpool Talbot Rd T6 Manchester Shudehill Interchange (M55)-Kirkham, Preston Bus Station Stand 11, Frenchwood (M65,M61) - Chorley, Horwich (M61) Salford Gives Change Alexander Dennis Enviro 400, Volvo Olympian, Coaches Every hour until 4pm. Also branded as Stagecoach Expess , Easy Access buses used 50% of the time.


Preston park and ride

All park and ride buses are Easy AccessServices 1 & 2 primarily use Optare Solo SRs, Optare Solos are additionally used at peak periods. The Orbits are 88A & 88C and therefore use Optare Solos.
No. From To Fast Fare/Gives Change Notes
1 Preston Portway Gives Change
2 Preston Walton-le-Dale Gives Change
orbits Preston Bluebell Way Fast Fare


School services

Stagecoach in Preston also provides school buses to secondary school and colleges in Preston and the Wyre, running as far as Cabus and Garstang to the north, Accrington to the east, Chorley to the south and Blackpool to the west. This uses mostly the Olympians.

Brands

Stagecoach in Preston has 6 different brands for services.
Preston Citi - 1, 2, 3, 3A, 3B, 7, 8, 9, 11, 14, 16, 19, 19A, 22, 23, 29, 31, 35, 44, 81, 87 and 89.
Preston Orbit - 88A, 88C
Network Ribble Valley - 4 (Stagecoach in Lancashire route 5 from Longridge - Clitheroe and Clitheroe local services are run under the same brand).
Fylde Coastliner - 61, 68.
Stagecoach Express - X61
Boomerang - 150, 151
Route 113 - 113
X2 - X2
Park & Ride - 1 Portway, 2 Walton-le-Dale, Orbit serves Bluebell Way
Others - 2B, X59


Depots

Stagecoach in Preston use two depots.

The main one is the one previously owned by Preston Bus, on Deepdale Road. This can hold over 150 buses and holds those previously owned by Preston Bus, sometimes a Megabus coach and some Dart SLFs and Enviro 400s. In the Optare Solos it only holds the ones that don't give change.

The other smaller one is on Selbourne Street. This holds buses used on Fylde Coastliner, Network Ribble Valley, the Coaches and the change giving Solos. It also holds some Dart SLFS and Enviro 400s. This was previously owned by Stagecoach in Lancashire, and before that Ribble Motor Services.

Fares

Stagecoach in Preston operates mostly with a fixed fare rate within the citi area, which stretches from Broughton Roundabout to Walton-le-Dale (White Bull/Walton Green), from Penwortham (Kingsfold Estate/Booths Store/Howick Cross) to Roman Way and from Lea to Samlesbury (Tickled Trout). On services not subsidised by Lancashire County Council, there is an under-16 Flat Fare of 60p for anywhere withing the Citi Zone. The Citi area covers the whole urban area of Preston.

From 20th September 2009, Preston Citi fares will be as such:

There are three zones within the citi area, and this applies to adult fares. Travelling within one zone costs 90p. Going from one zone into another is £1.10. Crossing 2 boundaries is £1.30.On services subsidised by Lancashire County Council the fares are judged by distance, and child fares are half of the adult fares. The three zones are as such:
  • Citizone 1 = 2km (1¼ mile) radius around Bus Station.
  • Citizone 2 = 3.5km (2⅕ mile) radius around Bus Station (1.5km from edges of Citizone 1).
  • Citizone 3 = The rest of the Citi area.


The Citi fares apply to all Stagecoach services that run within the Preston Citi area, with the exception of journeys which are subsidised by Lancashire County Council. Outside the Citi area, the fare prices are decided by the length of the journey. e.g. 40/41 from Lancaster into Preston or Preston to Lancaster depends on distance, but from Black Bull into the City Centre or the City Centre to Black Bull is citizone fares.

The fare distance pricing applies to Stagecoach North West services 40, 41, 109, 114, 125, 126, X7 and X8, and Stagecoach in Preston services 1, 2, 2B, 3B, 4, 61, 68, 113, 150 & 151, X2, X59 and X61, which all leave the citi area.

Preston Bus operated a fast fare system for many years before being taken over by Stagecoach. This was because they had noted that many of their services had turned up being delayed due to the bus driver being short of change. So they introduced the fast fare system, a new system of precise, expected fares and no change given. This was good for time, but bad for people who had no change and just a £5 note.

When Stagecoach Preston Citi began, they noticed that some people were left behind with their £5 notes. So they posted on all their buses that change was accepted. Stagecoach's biggest service in Preston was the service 3, so Preston Bus gave change on that service only.

When Stagecoach in Preston started, along with new fares, some services (specified above) were made to accept change. These mainly consisted of former Stagecoach Preston Citi services, but some former Citi services (e.g. 11) have been kept under Fast Fare due to the buses used on them not having a compartment to keep change. As well as repainting buses, Stagecoach in Preston are trying to change interiors so that they can stop the Fast Fare system.

There are two types of bus pass for Preston - Preston Citirider and Preston Megarider.Map of Preston Citizone and information about Citi fares can be found through this link - http://www.prestonbus.co.uk/images/PrestonCitiFares_Feb2009.pdfMap of Preston Megarider and information about ALL tickets in Preston can be found through this link - http://www.stagecoachbus.com/shop/index.php?action=&sid=20090913105945-6832&product_id=14&location_id=20&x=35&y=6

Fleet

The Preston Bus fleet was originally all double deckers, but latterly the company moved to single deckers and midibuses, with the most common vehicle as of 2008 being the Optare Solo midibus.

With the merge, Stagecoach want to buy more double deckers.

As of November 2009 the company's fleet comprised:,

  • 97 Optare Solo midibuses, bought since 2001 by Preston Bus and since 2004 by Stagecoach. Used regularly on all services except for 1, 2, 3, 16, 19, 22, 23, 35, 61 ,68, X2 & X61. 50 were Preston bus and 47 were Stagecoach Preston Citi. Around 70 in Stagecoach Preston Citi livery, 10 in Preston Orbit livery, 8 in Network Ribble Valley livery and the rest still in Preston Bus livery.,
  • 2 Leyland Lynx large single deckers bought between 1989 and 1991 (Originally 5 others at point of sale). Used mainly on school services and kept at bus depot for rest of the day for times when they need extra buses.In Preston Bus livery..
  • 27 Leyland Olympian double deckers, one new in 1984, the others bought between 1989 and 1992 (10 examples purchased second hand from Lothian Buses in 2003). Mainly kept in depot, but usage on services not contracted to easy access bus, school services, planned use on service 7 four times a day and occasionally on service 11. Otherwise mainly kept in depot and only used in emergencies. Around 22 in Preston Bus livery and rest in Stagecoach in Preston livery. Also used on 89.,. Originate from Preston Bus.
  • 18 Dennis Trident 2 double deckers, bought between 1999 and 2000. Used regularly on 11, 23, 35 . Used sometimes on 1, 2, 3, 19, 22, 61, 68 & 89 and used occasionally on 7. Around 10 in Stagecoach Preston Citi livery and rest in Preston Bus livery. All in East Lancs Lolyne bodies. ,. Originate from Preston Bus.
  • 12 Scania large single-deckers (Optare Esteem/East Lancs Esteem), bought between 2006 and 2007. Used on many services, mainly 3, 9, 11, 16, 19, 22, 35 and occasionally on 2, 23, 61, 68. Around 9 in Stagecoach Preston Citi livery and rest in Preston Bus livery.,. Originate from Preston Bus.
  • 8 Optare Solo SR midibuses with leather seats and television screens (for the Park & Ride services). All in Preston Park & Ride livery.,,. Originate from Preston Bus.
  • 2 Scania N94UD OmniDekka, bought in 2006. Used regularly only on 23 & 35 and used occasionally on 11, 1 in Preston Bus livery and one in Stagecoach Preston Citi livery. ,,. Originate from Preston Bus.
  • 2 Optare Versa large single deckers. Used mainly on 3, 9, 16, 19 & 22. Sometimes used on 61 & 68. Both in Citi Livery.. Originate from Stagecoach.
  • 22 Alexander Dennis Enviro 400 double deckers, most bought in 2006 & 2007 which some are ex Stagecoach Newcastle. Used mainly on 1,2,X2,X61 sometimes on 19,22. Also used occasionally on 61,68. Around 23 in Stagecoach Preston Citi livery and around 7 in X2 livery. The ones in Citi livery are all pure Alexander Dennis Enviro 400s. The ones in X2 livery are Alexander Enviro 400s with Scania engines and chasses.,. Originate from Stagecoach.
  • 22 Dennis Dart SLF single deckers bought used & new from Stagecoach Preston Citi 2004–2006. Used mainly on 3, 9, 16 19,22 & occasionally on 2. All in Stagecoach Preston Citi livery. 2 have East Lancs Spryte bodies and are from 1996 (bought used), 15 have Plaxton Pointer (recent) bodies and were bought new 2003-2004. 5 have other bodies which are from 1999 (bought used). . Originate from Stagecoach.
  • 15 Volvo B10M large single deckers used mainly on Fylde Coastliner Services and X59, but also kept in depot for times when more buses are in need. All in Stagecoach Fylde Coastliner livery.,. Originate from Stagecoach.
  • 20 Volvo Olympian double deckers used on Fylde Coastliner services and X61. All in Stagecoach Fylde Coastliner Livery.,
  • 4 MAN 18.220/Alexander ALX300 large single deckers used on 9, 16 and occasionally on 2, 3, 19, 22. All in Preston Citi livery. Previously these buses were in service with Stagecoach in Fife, and were swapped with 5 Solos from Fleetwood Outstation, made available by a drop in PVR. Were repainted into Preston Citi in September 2009 and first used on the second week of September 2009. Originate from Stagecoaach.
  • 15 Coaches used on X59 and X61 sometimes. Occasionally used on X2. Originally from Stagecoach, some plainly branded Stagecoach, others with Stagecoach Express.


Most Optare Esteem and many Dennis Tridents have had their ticket machines changed to give out Stagecoach North West Tickets and to accept change.

At the time of Stagecoach's purchase of Preston Bus, there were 23 Enviro 400s and 22 Dennis Darts. Some of the former Stagecoach in Lancashire Optare Solos, a total of 47 vehicles including those branded as "Preston Citi", have also been added to the fleet. This is in addition to the 50 Solos owned by Preston Bus before the time of purchase.

Easy Access Bus

The majority of the buses in Stagecoach in Preston are Easy Accessible. Optare Solos, Dennis Tridents, Optare Esteems, Optare Solo SRs, Optare Versas, MANs, Dennis Enviro 400s & Dennis Darts are all Easy Access. Services 1,2,2B,3,3A,3B,4,8,9,11,14,16,19,19A,22,23,21,29,35,44,81,Orbits,113,150,151 & X2 are all completely Easy Access. All others except Fylde Coastliner are mostly Easy Access. 7 has specified times which aren't Easy access, which happen four times a day.

See also

References

External links




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