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DaveHarries

[UK] New buses in Taunton

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The Taunton depot of First Somerset & Avon has recently got hold of some new single-deckers for the 1 & 1A services in the town. The new buses are 8.9m in length, have 28 seats, and are Alexander-Dennis Enviro200 Darts. While I was in Taunton (I am not from the town) taking pictures I went for a trip on one of these buses. Not bad but a touch short on legroom for my liking. Otherwise a smooth and fairly comfortable trip.

The odd thing with these buses is that, while I had thought they would end up on West of England plates (eg. WU58 or WX58...) or Scottish (eg. SJ58 or SX58...) these turned up with York plates. Reason for this, I later found out, was that these buses are put together in Scarborough, hence York plates. My reason for thinking that they might get Scottish plates was that the buses were previously put together at Falkirk, Scotland but I wasn't aware of the change of location.

The pictures were taken on the buses' first day in service, 28th November 2008:

45111, YX58 FRJ: http://buses.fotopic.net/p55124874.html

45112, YX58 FRK: http://buses.fotopic.net/p55124906.html

45113, YX58 FRL: http://buses.fotopic.net/p55124876.html

45114, YX58 FRN: http://buses.fotopic.net/p55124904.html

45115, YX58 FRP: http://buses.fotopic.net/p55124878.html

Nice vehicles though, and they take the colours well IMO.

Dave

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Nice vehicles indeed. Not too fond of 'First' though. They're taking over the railways like a plague. Same with National Express, Arriva and Stagecoach. It's hard to find a Train Operating Company in the UK now that doesn't have First, National Express or Arriva in it somewhere. Stagecoach is at least keeping the names nice and tidy: "South West Trains" and "East Midlands Trains" as opposed to "Arriva Cross Country" or "National Express East Coast"

I'll have to keep a lookout for new buses when I visit England again next summer...

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Nice photos! Hopefully they would come up with a diecast model of Enviro 200 dart in the First "Barbie" paint scheme!

Is that how license plates are categorized in UK, the first two alphabets represent the region (of where the vehicle was assembled / built?)

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Nice vehicles indeed. Not too fond of 'First' though. They're taking over the railways like a plague. Same with National Express, Arriva and Stagecoach. It's hard to find a Train Operating Company in the UK now that doesn't have First, National Express or Arriva in it somewhere. Stagecoach is at least keeping the names nice and tidy: "South West Trains" and "East Midlands Trains" as opposed to "Arriva Cross Country" or "National Express East Coast"

I'll have to keep a lookout for new buses when I visit England again next summer...

It's not only taking over UK... It's trying to take over Canada as well!! :P (albeit school bus industry only)

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Well, I can live with First. It's National Express and Arriva who I can't really stand that much...

They could have come up with something a little more original though... Example: "West Anglia Railways" instead of "First Capital Connect" or just stuck with the old branding "Great North Eastern Railway" (GNER) as opposed to "National Express East Coast"

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Is that how license plates are categorized in UK, the first two alphabets represent the region (of where the vehicle was assembled / built?)

Not so much where the vehicle was assembled / built but where the vehicle was registered as sometimes the operator will register new vehicles with plates local to their area. The first letter gives the region where it was registered, the second indicates through which office the vehicle was registered. Each region has one or more offices (typically not more than three, with the exception of Scotland which has 5 offices, region code S) where vehicles can be registered and each office has a group of letters. For example, W indicates the south West of England. In that region there are three offices where vehicles can be registered and these are at Exeter, Truro and Bristol. Therefore anything starting WA will have been registered in Exeter while anything starting WX will have been registered in Bristol.

However the UK bus builder Optare tend to always register vehicles built by them via. the York region of which there is only one office (region code Y.)

Full list, if you are interested: http://www.dvla.gov.uk/media/pdf/leaflets/inf104.pdf

HTIOI,

Dave

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