Wednesday, 18 January 2023

Bus Station Information - The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.

 A quick visit to three Lancashire bus stations recently showed a wide disparity of approach in providing people with information about bus services in a form they can take away with them and consult at their leisure without need of a data connection, a battery or even a PC or 'phone:  The printed timetable leaflet.


Chorley bus station is operated by Lancashire County Council.  There is an information desk on the concourse, which at the time of our visit was apparently unstaffed (or at least, none of the staff were visible), and the only immediately available information was the above notice fixed to the plastic screen that separates customers from staff, or would do if any staff were on duty.

Stagecoach please note:  No one would go to the trouble of making and sticking up a poster like this if they weren't fed up of people constantly asking them for something they haven't got - printed timetable leaflets!

It's possible that timetable leaflets for Blackburn Bus Company's service 2 to Blackburn and for the various services operated under contract to the county council were available, although there was no evidence of this - and no one to ask, so we can't be sure.


Things were much better at Blackburn, where the newish bus station is operated by Blackburn-with-Darwen Council.

Here, there was an enquiry desk with a staff member waiting to assist and no barrier to keep the customers at bay, plus a fully-stocked, help-yourself leaflet dispenser with timetables for all services readily available. An excellent example of how things should be done.

Meanwhile in....


We have this:

Despite our branch of Stagecoach being one of the few to still produce timetable leaflets they are not easy to come by and certainly not from the Travel Shop, which closed at the start of the Covid pandemic, never to re-open.
We are told that if you can find an inspector - and if you ask very nicely - they might just delve into their secret cupboard under the stairs in their office and get one for you (but don't tell them we said so!)

The Good, The Bad and the Ugly....we'll leave you do decide which is which!