Wednesday, 16 August 2006

A Bus Stop No More

This is, or was as I now should say, the bus stop on the Newton Road by the junction of Regent Close. Not only was it a bus stop, it was also a Timing Point. You know, one of those places that the bus stopped at even though no one was standing there and waited for no apparent reason. It was also a place where drivers changed over. Again if you travel by bus you will know the feeling when the bus pulls into the stop and one driver gets out of the cab and an other takes over. Great though the job is we have to give it a rest now and then. Some drivers can change over in less than a couple of minutes, some take what seems a couple of hours though the longest I ever saw a driver take was 23 minutes. It is amazing how hard some people will work in order not to actually do any work.

Any way, the council decided that having the stop just at the traffic lights was not the best place and moved it 100 yards closer to Torquay. So now it stands, unused and ignored. After long years standing proudly at the side of the road, it's shelter, depending which way the wind was blowing, keeping the waiting passengers dry. School children have used it's windows to practice their handwriting on, some times using words I wouldn't want my maiden aunt to see. They have used the shelter to do pull ups from in the utter boredom spent waiting for ever for the bus to turn up. How many have had their first cigarette there, egged on by their peers? The bus stop flag, on top of it's pole boldly proclaiming it's status; a place for buses to stop, has been, without cerermony removered and discarded. It's timetable, which for years has both informed and baffled the traveling public like wise had gone. Never again will any one stand there looking in the direction of Newton hoping against hope that their bus would be on time or now and then that it would even turn up. I myself have used this stop over 2500 times on my way home from work so I have some feeling for its demise.

Sooner or later the council will remember it and the bulldozer will be dispatched to remove the shelter and flag pole and all signs that a proud bus stop once stood here. When that happens I hope that the council will recognize the contribution it has made to the people of Torquay and erect a suitable memento to note it's passing.


Steve said...

The Brisbane city council, here in Australia, is currently considering getting rid of some bus stops as well. Not because they're no longer needed, but because too many people are using the buses and therefore they're full long before they get into town.

I guess the idea is that without bus stops people can't get on the buses, so they don't fill up.

The idea of increasing the number of buses and taking on more drivers seems to be of lesser importance to the bean counters, that would cost them more money.

I suppose as long as they don't get rid of my stop I'll be okay. A five minute walk from home and I usually get to sit up the front where I can see where we're going.

helen said...

How do you know it has been there since 1923 or was that a wild guess?

justajob said...

Just a wild guess but based vaguely on what an other driver told me. One day if I get the chance I may look the correcr date up.

Anonymous said...

Why move it to where it creates more traffic jams. Now there is no layby and the traffic is split into 2 lanes so if a bus pulls up the inside lane heading for town is further delayed hope this is not going to be used for crew changes or you might see more angry motorists.

justajob said...

Sorry Mike but it is still used by 12 and X46 buses to change drivers and it is still a timing point so lots of not happy motorists. I should point out at this point that it is not the company that moved it but the local council