Blackwater Branding

Hot on the heels of the recent changes to Stagecoach services in the Blackwater Valley area, route branding in a familiar Stagecoach South ‘teardrop’ style (think Basingstoke, Chichester 51/52/53/55, and the local 94 when Stagecoach briefly ran between Camberley and Bracknell). The 51 to Selsey uses a windmill icon representing Medmerry Windmill, whilst for our local routes the symbol that has been chosen is a fighter jet. This links Farnborough’s aviation history with Aldershot’s strong military background. So far only routes 2 and 3 have received branding and it is unclear if more will follow.

Both routes were subject to changes last month though, this new branding highlighting the positives – every 20 mins Farnborough to Hawley Lane Estate, and every 15 mins Camberley to Yateley respectively. The 2 was made hourly Farnborough to Camberley all week, which was good news on Sundays as that doubled the two-hourly service, but Monday to Saturday this saw the half-hourly frequency halved, including over the section serving Frimley Park Hospital. Short journeys were introduced between Farnborough and Hawley Lane Estate though, creating a 20 min frequncy on weekdays and half-hourly on Saturdays over that most southern section. This meant the PVR (peak vehicle requirement) remained at four on weekdays but could be dropped to three on Saturdays. The 3 was removed from Tongham but half-hourly shorts were introduced between Camberley and Yateley to maintain a quarter-hourly frequency over that section to make up for the withdrawal of route 2 between Camberley and Yateley, which had previously operated alongside the 3, each half-hourly.

The PVR of route 2 is four. The following buses have so far been observed as branded for it:

  • 36651 – GX08 HBN
  • 39653 – GX08 HBP
  • 39654 – GX08 HBU
  • 39655 – GX08 HBY

The PVR of route 3 is eight. The following buses have so far been observed as branded for it:

  • 36909 – GX13 APF
  • 36910 – GX13 APK
  • 36911 – GX13 APO
  • 36912 – GX13 APU
  • 36913 – GX13 APV
  • 36914 – YX63 GYN
  • 36915 – YX63 KFD
  • 36916 – YX63 KFE

The last Blackwater Valley area branding exercise saw mostly childrens’ toys used as the theme, however only two will be recognised as still in use on vehicles (although some bus stop flags on route 15 do retain the old route name). Indeed, the two remaining ones have gone further than any of the others in that they lost their route numbers in favour of the brand name. Interestingly, route 2 received the oldest allocation of the branded routes at the time, with today’s new allocation also being over a decade old now. They come from a batch originally used on The Kite, replaced on that route by a new fleet in January 2015 but which are now on the University of Surrey services in Guildford. All but the last of route three’s newly branded vehicles have in fact worn route 3 branding (the ‘Arrow’ design also seen in Portsmouth) before when new, prior to repaint over recent months.

  • 2: The Marbles
  • 3: Three Little Wishes
  • 4/5: Connect 4 (&5)
  • 6: YoYo
  • 15: Scoot
  • 20: The Kite

Here are a few photos of the new route 2 and 3 branding courtesy of Brendan Cross.

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One thought on “Blackwater Branding

  1. Pingback: Fleet News | Hants & Surrey Bus Blog

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