diamond geezer

 Thursday, May 16, 2019

On Tuesday this notice appeared at Bus Stop M. It also appeared at hundreds of other bus stops across London.

A number of bus routes are changing in central London this year. Routes from this stop will be affected. Visit this page on our website for further information.
Problem 1: If you visit that page on the TfL website there is no further information.
Problem 2: The changes don't affect anyone catching a bus from this stop.
PermBusChanges is TfL's online repository of permanent bus changes. It contains details of changes to routes, frequencies and stopping arrangements, usually but not always with maps. There's also TempBusChanges for diversions, disruptions and roadworks, but that's not relevant here.

PermBusChanges comprises a very long list of updates going back 18 months, because nobody chops old changes off the bottom of the list. But it doesn't yet contain details of the Central London Bus Services Review, a major consultation affecting 29 bus routes whose outcomes were confirmed last month. No link, no dates, no information whatsoever. Anyone acting on the advice on the yellow poster at Bus Stop M will discover nothing of relevance.

PermBusChanges also includes a link to TfL's most unreliable document, its fortnightly update of Permanent Bus Changes. The latest version was due out last Friday, then delayed to this Tuesday, then delayed until tonight. It might not even appear then. None of this year's fortnightly updates have been published on the day they were supposed to be. The latest so-called update, over a fortnight ago, actually apologised for not containing any new information. Either nobody at TfL can make their minds up about what buses they're changing, or the team that produces this summary are entirely incompetent.

Only one bus route from Bus Stop M goes to Central London, and that's the 8. But the 8 isn't changing in the latest round of consultations - it was last curtailed to Tottenham Court Road in 2013. Two buses come from Central London, one of which is the 25. But the 25 isn't changing in the latest round of consultations - it was last curtailed to City Thameslink in 2018. The only relevant service is the N205 which serves Bus Stop M between half past one and six o'clock in the morning. The N205 is changing, it'll be skipping Marylebone station, but that's not in the direction of travel and Marylebone station was 40 stops ago.

The yellow poster is irrelevant to anyone waiting at Bus Stop M, especially during daytime hours, but still exhorts all passengers to check a website where there isn't any information.

Even at directly affected stops the yellow poster is a generic splurge providing no specific information whatsoever, slapped up before there was anything to announce. It'll have been cheap to produce, print and distribute. It ticks a box. But it's no help to anyone trying to work out where their bus goes, and that's very much the direction of travel.

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