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THE LATEST NEWS OF IMPORTANT EVENTS
IMPORTANT MERGERS BY "UNITED COUNTIES."
THE United Counties Omnibus and Road Transport Co., Ltd., will, The Commercial Motor understands, absorb, subject to the ratification of the East Midland Traffic Commissioners, Messrs. Allain's Luxury Coachways, Northampton, one of the oldest-established express-carriage businesses. The purchase involves nine services, 30 vehicles, and tours and excursions.
This transaction is one of the most Important the Midlands has known. Messrs. Allchin's long-distance services, tours and excursions cover most areas in the country. In two months, it is hoped, the licences will be transferred.
The "United Counties," although an extensive stage-carriage operator, has not previously been associated, to any degree, with regular long-distance travel, and the purchase will greatly widen its sphere of activities.
There is included also, the Northampton-London service, transferred a short time ago from Midland Motorways to Messrs. Allchin. Until ratification is forthcoming, the 30 vehicles purchased will continue on the routes as Allchin's Luxury Coaches. Mr. Allchin, Jnr., will associate himself with the United Counties concern.
The United Counties company has been making rapid progress in the past six months, and is purchasing the excursions and tours and stage-carriage services of Messrs. W. A. Nightingale and Sons (Midland Motorways), Northampton, together with 16 vehicles of the firm, Mr. P. Nightingale joining the company. The "United Counties" is also purchasing several local services south of Northampton, run by Mr. S. Kingston (Silverstone), Mr. M. Jelley (Cosgrove), and Messrs. A. Varney, L. Tibbetts and J. Dunkley, Buckingham.
LONDON TRANSPORT'S VICTORY OVER REDCAR.
LONDON Transport was successful
in two applications to the South Eastern Commissioners, on Tuesday, when it was announced that the Board would be granted licences for stage services from Sevenoaks to Tonbridge, one being via Weald. Redcar Services, Ltd., failed in its applications for licences for services from Goldsmith Road to Sevenoaks, via Weald, and for a service from ,Sevenoaks to Uckfield and Crowborough. The last-named was run jointly by the Redcar concern and Autocar Services, Ltd., but when the Board took over that part of the latter's organization within its area, the service had to be split at Tonbridge.
It was submitted that the Board could not run from Sevenoaks to Crowbormigh and was not permitted to enter working agreements with other operators, whereas the Redcar concern could make such agreements and the need for passengers 1140 changing vehicles would be avoided.
The new licences will continue in force smtil the end of February next and the Commissioners urge the parties involved to co-ordinate their timings, and London Transport to establish a bus station at Tonbridgc.
ANOTHER WELSH MERGER.
AN amalgamation of Mid-Glamorgan bus services has been brought about, which will result in the systems being run as one, under a new name. The firms involved are Vale Motor Services, which have been carried on by Mr. H. H. Gosling, of Wick, and Reliance Motor Services, of Mr. John Thomas and his son, of Bridgend. The buses of both services centre on Bridgend. The combined undertaking will be known as Green and White Services, Ltd., and about 10 buses are involved.
In addition to the bus proprietors named, two other well-known Mid.
Glamorgan operators, who will continue separate bus services of their own, will be directors, namely, Mr. W. T. Jones, the Garage, Brynceithen, and Mr. F. T. John, Nantyffyllon.
NEW TRANSITORY ORDER.
THE Minister of Transport has made the Public Service Vehicles (Transitory Provisions) Order, 1933, which revokes the Public Service Vehicles (Transitory Provisions) (No. 2) Order, 1931.
HUDDERSFIELD'S FIRST TROLLEYBUS ROUTE.
THE first trolleybus service of Hud dersfield Corporation, replacing trams, was inaugurated last Monday. With other trolleybus services which are to be started, it is anticipated that, before the end of the year, the corporation will be working these vehicles over a distance of nine miles.
At the opening of the first service were the Mayor of Huddersfield (Alderman A. Hirst), Deputy Mayor (Alderman T. Shires), chairman of Huddersfield Tramways Committee (Alderman T. Cooby), Huddersfield tramways manager (Mr. T. Godsmark), the extramways manager (Mr. A. A. Blackburn), Bradford tramways manager (Mr. C. B. Tattam), and the chairman of the Yorkshire Traffic Commissioners (Mr. Joseph Ferndale). ' DRASTIC LIMITS ON DUPLI CATION.
ON Tuesday last the Metropolitan Traffic Commissioner decided to apply the Minister of Transport's ruling on the duplication of long-distance coaches to the regular daily LiverpoolLondon services of Crosville Motor Services, Ltd., and to the YorkshireLondon services of the West Yorkshire Road Car Co., Ltd., and associated companies. No duplication was allowed on the Crosville summer services.
The Minister, on being asked for his views, had, it was stated at the sitting, informed Crosville Motor Services, Ltd., that it appeared that no duplication should be permitted on services not run daily throughout the year. The Commissioner thought that each service should be considered on its merits, and that the Minister did not intend to lay down any firm rule.
"EASTERN COUNTIES" TAKES OVER TRAMWAYS CO.
1VE understand that the Eastern " Counties Omnibus Co., Ltd., Norwich, has acquired a controlling interest in the Norwich Electric Tramways Co. For the time being, the undertaking of the latter will be carried on as hitherto, and it is hoped that improved.co-ordination of local services will be possible under the new conditions.
It may be recalled that, less than a year ago, the proposal of Norwich Corporation to purchase the Norwich Electric Tramways Co. was defeated at a public poll. At that time, a price of £175,000 was mentioned.
FOUR APPLICATIONS FOR LICENCE TRANSFERS.
THE Yorkshire Traffic Commissioners have received an application from the West Yorkshire Road Car Co., Ltd., for the transfer of the stage-carriago licences of Corcoran Bros., Ltd.
The East Midland Commissioners are being asked to transfer to Barton Transport, Ltd., the stage-carriage licence of Messrs. J. W. Kirkland. The Lincolnshire Road Car Co., Ltd., is seeking the stage-service and excursions and tours licences of Scunthorpe United Motor Services, Ltd., a company formed in 1931. The United Counties Omnibus Co., Ltd., wishes to take over an excursions and tours licence of the Eastern National Omnibus Co., Ltd.
P.S.V. REGULATIONS AVAILABLE.
COPIES of the Public Service
Vehicles (Licences and Certificates) Regulations, 1923, dated November 22, are now available from H.M. Stationery Office, or from any bookseller, price 4d. As we pointed out last week, the new regulations follow the lines of the draft dealt with in our issue dated September 29, but they include minor alterations. NO "ANYWHERE" TICKETS FOR EASTERN COUNTIES CO.
AFTER considering the subject at three different sittings, the Eastern Traffic Commissioners have refused the application of the Eastern Counties Omnibus Co., Ltd., to issue unlimitedtravel tickets at 3s. 6d. each in four zones. Previous hearings of the application were reported in our issues dated December 1 and November 10.
For the London and North Eastern, and London, Midland and Scottish Railway companies, it was submitted that they would be forced to introduce a similar ticket at 3s. 6d., which would also have to be issued all the year round.
For the Eastern Counties Company, it was argued that, in the past, such tickets had been issued at the rate of 1.000 per week, and when they were withdrawn there were signs of considerable public disapproval. In answer to objections of local operators, it was stated that the other concerns in the Norwich area were interested chiefly in excursions and tours, and such traffic was different from that travelling on " anywhere " tickets.
In refusing the application, Sir Haviland Riley, the chirman, pointed out that if it were granted, and similar applications were subsequently approved, the present co-ordination of fares would c'ollapse. Moreover, the Eastern Counties concern had applied at the end of 1932 for permission to adjust most of the fares on its stagecarriage services, and this had been granted. If the company now found it possible to introduce cheaper fares, Sir Haviland observed, the first matter to he considered should be the restitution of concessions to . those passengers whose fares were increased.
CARDIFF'S TROLLEY BUS PLAN.
CARDIFF City Council has now de
cided, at a special meeting, on the terms of its Bill to be promoted in Parliament during the 1933-34 session. Sanction to proceed immediately with the preparation of a site for the erection of the central bus station at Cardiff (particulars of -which, with the financial commitment, have appeared, from time to time, in The Commercial Motor) is to be sought.
Provision is included for the corporation to replace the trains by trolley buses on all or any of existing tram routes, and for power, subject to Ministry of Transport Orders, to institute new and additional trolley bus services.
Power is sought also to acquire by compulsory purchase the Penarth Road toll road and bridges.
"SMOKE" FROM VAPORIZER: IMPORTANT CASE LOST. THE hearing was concluded, at the Mansion House, London, last Monday, of summonses arising out of the use, by Upminster Services, Ltd., of paraffin as fuel for some of its vehicles. A driver was summonsed for driving a coach "which was not maintained in such a condition that there was not emitted therefrom smoke, the emission of which could have been prevented or avoided by the taking of reasonable steps, or the exercise of reasonable care."
The company was charged with causing the offence to be committed, and having failed to give notice to the Traffic Commissioners of the fixing of an extra tank for the storage of petrol.
Mr. P. B. Showan said it was well known that the company had converted a few of its coaches in this respect. He argued that, as they had been inspected by the public service vehicle examiners, sufficient notice had been given through' them to the Commissioners. As to the emission of smoke—if this " vapour " could be so described—he submitted that, as it was nothing more than arose from the use of paraffin fuel, in the absence of any proof that it could have been avoided, no offence had been committed.
Alderman Sir Kynaston Studd ruled against counsel on both points.
Mr. Showan said he should give formal notice of appeal. In the meantime, he would like to mention that, within a month, these coaches would be taken over by the London Passenger Transport Board, and that the company did not propose to convert any more of the vehicles.
Sir Kynaston fined the driver 20s., and the company 20s., on each of the two summonses against it (instead, as he said, of £20) and £2 2s. costs,
The previous hearing of this ease was reported in our issue dated November 24.
BUSES TO REPLACE TRAINS. FURTHER to the paragraph in last week's issue, the Northern Scotland Traffic Commissioners have decided that the road service to replace the rail service withdrawn between Fort Augustus and Spetm Bridge will he operated by Messrs. MacIntyre and Son, Fort William, and Messrs. MacRae and Dick, Inverness, on a 50-50 allocation of the route.
LONDON TRANSPORT BILL. THE Parliamentary Bill to be pro moted by London Transport, and referred to in last week's issue, also includes provision for power to be given to the Minister of Transport to make Orders authorizing the use of trolley buses upon routes in the Board's area, other than those specifically referred to.
Incidentally, an association, known as the Bedford Square Tenants' Association, is to be formed to oppose the proposal of the Board to use Bedford Square, W.C., as a terminus. RAILWAY OPPOSES DUPLICATION ON EASTERN SERVICES.
THE important subject of the dupli cation of long-distance coaches was again raised before the Eastern Traffic Commissioners 'last week. United Automobile Services, Ltd., and the Eastern Counties Omnibus Co., Ltd., applied for the renewal of licences for services from Lowestoft and Yarmouth to Newcastle. The London and North Eastern Railway Co. objected to the duplication of coaches.
It was explained on behalf of the U.A.S. that passengers were provided with postcards on which to notify the company of their return journeys, but only 50 per cent, made use of this facility. The U.A.S. reqqested duplication up to a maximum of 12 vehicles for each coach. It was submitted that economy considerations constituted the best limits on excessive duplication. It was argued that the rail service from Lowestoft to Newcastle was not comparable with the road service.
Sir Haviland Riley, the chairman stated that the Commissioners had 110 intention of abolishing the road service, but they reserved their decision on the matter of duplication.
YARMOUTH'S TRAMS TO GO. IN a short time, Yarmouth Corpora tion's remaining tramways will be abandoned. The municipality has now been granted permission by the Eastern Traffic Commissioners to replace the trams by buses. It was stated at the sitting that the corporation intended to buy ten additional buses, five singledeckers and five double-deekers.
FURTHER CRITICISM OF WEST MIDLAND COMMISSIONERS LAST week we noted a severe criticism of the West Midland Traffic Commissioners during the hearing of an appeal. Now we have to record a further criticism, of these Commissioners by the Stoke City Council.
At a meeting of the council it was alleged that the bus services in the area were inadequate, and that they are now less effective than ever before. It was complained that workpeople were stranded at peak periods, and that the Commissioners disregarded the wishes of the corporation. TWO APPEALS CONCERNING SAME SERVICE.
COMPLAINT of what he described as
a distinct preference having been given to large combine bus companies in Yorkshire, was made by Mr. Frank G. Bibbings, secretary of the Yorkshire Stage Carriage Operators' Association, at a public meeting at Allerton Bywater, near Wakefield. A resolution was unanimously passed, protesting against the Yorkshire Traffic Commissioners' refusal to renew the licence for a daily stage service operated by the Fox Transport Service. The facts, as outlined by Mr. Bibbinge, are that last year—as this year —the Commissioners refused the licence on the ground that the service was unnecessary or undesirable in the public interest. On appeal, the Minister of Transport reversed this decision, subject to certain restrictions. Owing to complaints by the public and a drop in receipts, Fox Transport Service asked for the...removal of the restrictions, but instead of removing them, the Commissioners decided not to renew the licence. The firm will again appeal.
Other protest meetings have been arranged. BLACKPOOL OPERATORS WANT A FREE HAND.
BLACKPOOL coach operators are to apply to the North Western Traffic Commissioners for a free hand in running services from that town to inland towns.
The corporation is supporting the local operators in this application, urging that permission should be granted for the large-scale duplication of coaches, including those on services to London and Other long-distance routes, and the removal of all other restrictions.