Ulsterbus Fleet News 2021

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06/09/21 - Commissioning of the current batch B11R/SC5 C51F continues, with all being initially allocated to York Road Engineering: 1241/8/9 (XUI 9741/28/49, 6th August), 1242/4/50 (XUI 9742/4/50, 13th August), 1239/45/51-4 (XUI 9739/45/17/8092/3/9754, 28th August). 24 were allocated to their permanent depots during the month : 1230-6 (Downpatrick), 1238-44 (Armagh) and 1245-54 (Derry). Scanias back in use are 839 (Newcastle), 818 (Coleraine) and 750 (Ticketing Project for GPS testing). Also back in service are the buses which were detaxed for the school holidays, with the exception of 230/45/9/98/374/88, which are either under repair or undergoing PSV preparation. Against this the following buses are now SORN: 771 (Larne, to Reserve), 782 (Coleraine, to Reserve), 816 (Downpatrick, to Reserve), 1001/47 (Armagh, to Reserve), 1006/7/13/8/46 (Derry, to Reserve), 1077 (Downpatrick, windscreen repairs before transfer to Coleraine), 1765 (Training Academy - to Reserve, this is the last of the Intercenturies), 1958 (Omagh - Reserve), 2415 (Coleraine - Reserve) and 2000 (Coleraine, seasonal), whilst Scania 2409 (Armagh) has been withdrawn due to gearbox defects. On the move are : 1813, (Craigavon - Bangor ), 250, ( Enniskillen - Dungannon ), 1042, ( Armagh - Enniskillen ), 602/3163, ( Coleraine - Ballymena ), 762/1062/71, ( Ballymena - Coleraine ), 1041, ( Armagh - Enniskillen ), 367, ( Armagh - Ballymena ), 534, ( Dungannon - Ballymena ), 610/1, ( Armagh - Ballymena ), 821, ( Coleraine - Enniskillen ), 436, ( Newcastle - Armagh ), 1056/7/8, ( Downpatrick - Newcastle ), 1818, ( Craigavon - Newtownabbey ), 2477, ( Newtownabbey - Derry ), 184, ( Derry - Magherafelt ), 601/7/8, ( Antrim - Ballymena ), 1019, ( Derry - Great Victoria Street ), 1072-4, ( Ballymena - Antrim ), 2478, ( Newtownabbey - Lisburn ), 2443/79/80, ( Newtownabbey - Coleraine ), 389, ( Antrim - Larne ),418, ( Larne - Antrim ), 343/554/2414/2882, ( Great Victoria Street - Lisburn ), 1003/2416, ( Newry - Downpatrick ), 612, ( Newcastle - Magherafelt ), 613, ( Stranraer - Magherafelt ), 614/5, ( Great Victoria Street - Larne ), 1011/44, ( Derry - Great Victoria Street ), 1075, ( Downpatrick - Larne ), 1076/8, ( Downpatrick - Coleraine ), 1045, ( Derry - Armagh ). Scania L94 2455 has been re-registered from GXI 455 to KEZ 7455. Buses sold are 757/8/69/880/12/1017/1677/88/90/9/1706/9/24/6/31 to Hamill for scrap, with i4s 1063/6 going to BRA for continued use.

01/08/21 - Commissioning has started on the next batch of B11R/SC5, all initially allocated to York Road Engineering. Unfortunately registrations for these are not in a single block: 1232-4/6 (XUI 9722/33/4/26, 9th July), 1230/1/5/7/8 (XUI 9720/1/5/37/8, 28th July), 1240/3/6/7 (XUI 9740/3/16/47, 30th July). 1237 was the first to be allocated to a permanent depot, Armagh. 6 further triaxles and 6 Volvo B8/SB3s are due with this delivery. Also in use now are the final 2 GB Hawks, 2523/6, both at Newtownabbey. Scania 2436 is back in use at Ballymena (re-registered from GXI 436 to BYZ 1096) whilst 800 and 2437 are also re-registered to BYZ 1051/98 respectively. Other buses off the reoad are 452 (Enniskillen, engine fire), 544 (Ballymena, accident damage), 818 (Coleraine, engine repairs), 1002/16 (Armagh, to Reserve), 1018 (Derry, rear axle repairs), 1036 (GVS, engine failure), 1958 (Omagh, exhaust repairs), 2453 (Enniskillen, engine repairs) and 2455 (Newcastle, engine repairs). I4 1017 (Derry) has been withdrawn, after being burnt out following an angine fire on the M2 on 24th July. Sunsun 1776 has gone from Armagh to the Training Academy, 2455 (Newcastle to Reserve) and 809 from Lisburn to Ballymena. Quite a number of buses have gone to Hamill for scrap: burnt out i4 1025, Irizars 1662/5/91/3/4/5/7/1702/3/5/10/1/2/7/9/21/34/8/42/7/57 and Scania L94 2437.

01/07/21 - The remainder of the Streetdeck single decks (now known as GB Hawk by Wrightbus) commenced their commissioning period during June, allocated to York Road: 2500/1/2/12 (XUI 8500, 4th June), 2521-6 (XUI 9821, 2nd June) and 2520/7-33 (XUI 9820, 3rd June). Similar buses completing their commissioning period and being allocated to permanent depots are 2500-2 (Coleraine), 2503/4 (Newry), 2505-8/10-6/18/9 (Craigavon), 2520-2 (Ballymena), 2524/5 (Newtownabbey) and 2537-33 (Antrim), along with Streetdeck 3357 (Magherafelt). With so many new vehicles joing the fleet recently, and more due, a substantial number of buses were put in to reserve status at the end of June: Scania L94 757/812 (Newcastle), 758/69 (Antrim), 780 (Newry), 800 (Derry), 810/11 (Lisburn), 836-40 (Antrim), 2436/7 (Ballymena) ; Irizar Intercenturies 1662/94/1703/19/21/54 (Magherafelt) 1665/91/3/7/34 (Ballymena), 1688/95/9/1705/6/9 (Larne), 1690/1732 (Coleraine), 1702/10/1 (GVS), 1717 (Dungannon), 1731/40/5 (Training Academy) and 1738/42 (re-acquired from Belfast Royal Academy); ALXs 2956 (Newcastle) and 2976/8 (Enniskillen). Also SORN for mechanical reasons are 458 (Ards, engine repairs), 542 (Ballymena, engine repairs and 2059 (Larne, diff repairs). With the end of the school year the following vehicles were de-taxed on the 30th June for the duration of the school holidays:
GVS 342, 343, 393, 394
Lisburn 197, 202, 203, 217, 218, 239, 240, 262, 263, 264, 329, 330, 331
Newtownards 181, 266, 310, 395, 396
Bangor 198, 199, 200
Craigavon 201, 251, 252, 253, 274, 275, 305, 306, 333, 334, 335, 336, 355, 356, 357, 414
Downpatrick 194, 195, 196, 211, 237, 238, 293, 294, 341
Armagh 224, 225, 226, 276, 277, 278, 292, 367, 368, 391, 558, 2292, 2418
Newcastle 193, 210, 234, 235, 236, 265, 295, 296, 340, 353, 354, 392
Newry 180, 189, 190, 191, 232, 233, 257, 258, 259, 267, 268, 269, 290, 291, 318, 319, 327, 328, 332, 344, 345, 346, 347, 379, 380, 381, 382, 383
Dungannon 216, 222, 223, 283, 314, 315, 326, 358, 359, 372, 373, 377, 378, 386, 397, 398
Derry 184, 192, 208, 209, 244, 247, 298, 300, 309, 348, 349, 364, 365, 366, 2876, 2877, 2892
Omagh 214, 215, 249, 301, 302, 303, 304, 385, 399
Enniskillen 212, 213, 250, 307, 308, 311, 387, 388
Coleraine 204, 205, 221, 246, 248, 272, 273, 284, 285, 286, 316, 320, 321, 324, 325, 361, 362, 363, 375, 400
Ballymena 188, 227, 228, 229, 287, 288, 289, 297, 299, 313, 317, 322, 337, 338, 370, 371, 376, 384, 1060, 1061
Larne 185, 186, 187, 230, 231, 312, 323, 339
Magherafelt 182, 183, 219, 220, 241, 242, 270, 271, 282, 350, 351, 352
Antrim 206, 207, 243, 254, 255, 256, 260, 261, 279, 280, 281, 369, 389, 390
Newtownabbey 460, 473, 474, 486, 491, 493, 2881, 2883, 2887
Returning to use are B7 2329 (Craigavon, after completion of accident repairs), 2879 (Ards, replacing 2890 which is now withdrawn), 2304 (Derry, after completion of engine repairs), i4 1047 (Armagh, after completion of engine repairs) and also Volvo Olympian open topper 2000, after nearly 2 years off the road. Also withdrawn are L94s 835 (Antrim) and 770 (Larne, both with axle defects). Transfers see 1780/1 go to the training Academy from Derry and Armagh, 2960/1 to Metro Reserve, 2424/5/6/448 (Craigavon - Lisburn), 418/9 (Craigavon - Larne), 613 (Newcastle - Stranraer), 757/812 (Lisburn - Newcastle), 2033 (Derry - Omagh), 1968/9/70 (Bangor - Omagh), 1940 (Omagh - Newcastle), 1957 (Omagh - Metro) and 2327 (Magherafelt - Enniskillen). Scanias 748/70/835/1667/9/1707/2468 have gone to Hamill for scrap, along with Solos 1879/1911 and ALX 2991.

01/06/21 - The final Streetdeck of the current batch, 3357 (XUI 8157), commenced it's initial commissioning period on 10th May, temporarily allocated to York Road. Similar 3355/9/60 completed their fault free period and have now moved on their permanent depot, all 3 going to Magherafelt. Also starting their commissioning period are the first of the Streetdeck SD B40F+56 saloons: 2505/6 (XUI 8505, 25th May), 2503/4 (26th May), 2507-11/3/4 (27th May) and 2515-9 (28th May). 2520-33 will take registrations XUI 9720 etc. Returning to use are 1705 (Larne, completion of engine repairs), 2880 (Newtownards, replacing 2979), 2882 (GVS, replacing 2991), 2321 (Dungannon, accident repairs complete), 476 (Lisburn, electrical repairs complete), 296 (Newcastle, engine repairs complete), 533 (Dungannon, engine repairs complete), 764 (Enniskillen, replacing 1747) and 248 (Coleraine, replacing 1669). Buses detaxed at the end of May are: 245/374/2415 (Coleraine, engine repairs), 405 (Downpatrick, engine repairs), 1022/3 (Enniskillen, to Reserve), 1667/1707 (Antrim, to Reserve), 1712 (Magherafelt, to Reserve), 1724 (Newcastle, to Reserve), 1726 (Training Academy, to Reserve), 1747 (Enniskillen, to Reserve), 2329 (Craigavon, accident damage), 2879 (Craigavon, to Reserve) and 2957/87 (Omagh, to Reserve). B7s 2979 (Ards) and 2991 (GVS) have been withdrawn due to accident damage and engine failure respectively. On the move are 1022/3 (Omagh - Enniskillen), 1767 (GVS - Training Academy), 2879 (Lisburn - Craigavon), 2315 (Magherafelt - Dungannon and then to Enniskillen) and 2321 (Dungannon - Omagh). Reregistrations see Scanias 2417/9/68 become AYZ 9048, AYZ 9049 and KEZ 7468 respectively, previously FXI 417/9 and HXI 468, whilst Scania/Irizar coaches 124/5/6/9 are now AYZ 9054-7, previously ROI 134/45/26/9. Derry based Tiger engineering vehicle 1260 has been renumbered 5023 to make way for an incoming B11R/SC5 coach, whose deliveries have now commenced. Finally, Scanias 767/74/1680/2417/9 have all gone to Hamill for scrap.

01/05/21 - Another 8 Streetdecks commenced their initial commissioning period during April, temporarily allocated to York Road: 3352/3/4 (14th April), 3355 (21st), 3356/8 (22nd), 3359 (23rd) and 3360 (29th) leaving just 3357 outstanding. Similar buses completing their commissioning and moving on to permanent depots are 3344 (Dungannon), 3347 (Antrim), 3350-4 (Armagh) and 3356/8 (Magherafelt). Returning to service are 1781 (Armagh, after electrical repairs), 762 (Ballymena, replacing 2468), 2260 (Newcastle, after electrical repairs), 2976 (Enniskillen, completion of repairs), 1778/9 (Training Academy, after completion of driving school modifications), 2058/9 (Larne, after gearbox and engine repairs respectively) and 2409 (Armagh, after engine repairs). With the influx of new buses the following are now in Reserve from the end of April: 774 (Newry), 767/ 1680 (Craigavon), 2417/9 (Armagh), 2880/2986 (Magherafelt) and 2882/2960/2 (Newtownabbey). Also detaxed are 296 (Newcastle, engine repairs), 476 (Lisburn, electrical repairs), 1047 (Armagh, engine repairs), 2223 (GVS, engine repairs), 2321 (DUngannon, accident damage), whilst 2468 (Ballymena), 1690 (Coleraine) and 759 (Training Academy) are withdrawn completely. Buses on the move are : 1016 (Dungannon - Armagh), 1018/9/44 (Dungannon - Derry), 2280 (Antrim - Newtownards), 2983 (Coleraine - Metro), 2309 (Coleraine - Craigavon), 1773/86 (Derry- Training Academy), 2270/1 (Armagh - Newtownards), 201 (Newtownards - Craigavon), 2879 (Craigavon- Lisburn), 2232/2216/7 (Antrim - Newtownabbey), 2956 (Antrim - Newcastle), 202 (Newtownards - Lisburn), 1724 (Lisburn - Newcastle) and 2320 (Dungannon - Omagh). Vehicles sold to Hamill for scrap during April are Prima 3, Solar 759, Irizars 1661/6/71/3/5/9/86/7/1700/15/41, Solos 1907/27 and ALXs 2947/50. More new buses in the offing are a further batch of Streetdecks to replace the remaining 3+2 seated Irizars, and 75 B11R/SC5 (including 9 tri-axles) to replace the remaining Goldline i4s and i6s.

01/04/21 - The glut of new vehicles contines with more commencing their initial commissioning period, all temporarily allocated to York Road: Volvo B11R/Sunsundegui C53F 1227/8 (XUI 7727, 5th March) and 1229 (24th March); Wrightbus Streetdeck H80F+13 3336/7/8/9 (XUI 8136, 5th March), 3340-2 (12th March), 3343-5 (18th March) 3347/8 (25th March), 3346 (26th March) and 3349-51 (1st April). Similar buses completing their commissioning and moving on to permanent depots are 0026 (Coleraine), 1200/2/3/4 (Omagh), 1217 (Dungannon), 1222-6 (Enniskillen), 1227-9 (Newry), 3191/3 (Coleraine), 3330-4 (Ballymena), 3335-9 (Bangor), 3340-4 (Dungannon) and 3345/6/8 (Antrim). Another batch of B11R/Sc5 are on their way, with up to 1242 present at Sunsundegui. Returning to use are 420/1 (Lisburn, after engine repairs), 2224 (GVS, after electrical repairs), 1023 (Omagh, after engine repairs), 1075 (Downpatrick, after engine repairs), 1051 (Magherafelt, after engine repairs) and 3160 (Ards, after accident damage repairs). With the new influx many buses were detaxed at the end of March: 533 (Dungannon, engine repairs), 1009 (Derry, engine repairs), 1026/7/8/9 (Enniskillen, to Reserve), 1679 (Craigavon, to Reserve), 1778/9 (Stranraer, to Reserve), 2893/2949/62/4 (Bangor, to Reserve), 2889/91/94 (Ards, to Reserve), 2946/8/76/8 (Enniskillen, to Reserve) and 2963 (Dungannon, to Reserve). On the move are 1778 (Stranraer - Downpatrick), 1779 (Downpatrick - Stranraer), 1941 (Newry - Enniskillen), 1008/45 (Enniskillen - Derry), 1017/46 (Dungannon - Derry), 1783 (Derry - Metro), 1075/6 (Larne - Downpatrick), 1037 (Dungannon - Great Victoria Street), 1042 (Omagh - Armagh), 1768 (Great Victoria Street - Metro), 1777 (Armagh - Metro), 1778 (Downpatrick - Stranraer), 1784 (Derry - Training Academy), 1024 (Omagh - Derry), 1035 (Enniskillen - Great Victoria Street), 2316/7 (Dungannon - Enniskillen), 2894 (Bangor - Newtownards), 2244/5/6/7/8 (Ballymena - Coleraine), 1772 (Derry - Training Academy), 1785 (Coleraine - Training Academy), 2308 (Coleraine - Craigavon), 248 (Enniskillen - Reserve Fleet - vehicle under long term repair), 2310 (Coleraine - Enniskillen) and 2984 (Coleraine - Newtownards). Vehicles Sold During March 2021 are Solars 711/47/9/68/73/83, Irizars 1728/33/5/43/6/8/9/62/3, Solos 1929 and ALX 2951 all going to Hamill for scrap, with 1760 and 1928 being sold through Wilsons Auctions, Mallusk. The 34 Streetdeck HDSDs due should be allocated to Craigavon (15), Antrim (7), Newtownabbey (4), Ballymena (3), Coleraine (3) and Newry (2).

06/03/21 - The glut of new vehicles contines with many commencing their initial commissioning period, all temporarily allocated to York Road: Optare Solo B29F+26 0025 (XUI 6625, 4th February), 0026 (26th February); leaving only 0027 to go; Volvo B11R/Sunsundegui C53F 1213-5 (XUI 7704, 4th February), 1216-9 (12th February), 1220/1 (18th February), 1222/3 (19th February), 1224-6 (26th February), leaving only 1227-9 outstanding; Wrightbus Streetdeck H80F+13 3195/6 (XUI 8195, 5th February), 3197 (17th February), 3198 (19th February), 3330-3 (XUI 8130, 19th February), 3199/3334 (24th February) and 3335 (1st March). Similar buses completing their commissioning and moving on to permanent depots are 0025 (Coleraine), 1210 (Coleraine), 1211-6/8 (Dungannon), 1219-21 (Larne), 3163-5 (Coleraine) and 3172-6/80-2 (Derry), 3166-71 (Downpatrick), 3177-9 (Derry), 3183/4/6/7 (Newry) and 3188-90/2/4-6 (Coleraine). With the new influx many buses were detaxed at the end of February: 761-4 (Coleraine, to Reserve), 768/73 (Antrim, to Reserve), 1063/6/7 (Larne, to Reserve), 1666/1715 (Omagh, to Reserve), 1671/86/7/1700 (Newry, to Reserve), 1673 (Newcastle - to Reserve), 1685 (Training Academy, to Reserve), 1758 (MSC, to Reserve), 1775 (Dery, to Reserve), 1781 (Armagh, electrical defects), 2941 (Lisburn, to Reserve), 2952 (Magherafelt, to Reserve), 2958/9/65 (Derry, to Reserve) and 3160 (Ards, accident damage). Also withdrawn was Omagh based i4 1025 which was burnt out near Ballygawley on 8th February following an engine fire. On the move are : 612 (Stranraer - Newcastle), 473/4 (Pennyburn - Newtownabbey), 2220 (Downpatrick - Newcastle), 1202 (Coleraine - York Road Engineering - Omagh), 1774 (Coleraine - Training Academy), 2216/7 (Downpatrick - Antrim), 2225 (Downpatrick - Lisburn), 2981/2 (Coleraine - Omagh), 1778 (Stranraer - Downpatrick - Stranraer), 1779 (Downpatrick - Stranraer - Downpatrick), 2980 (Coleraine - Newtownards), 1001/2 (Newry - Armagh), 1950 (Lisburn - Newry), 2875 (Coleraine - Enniskillen), 1775 (Derry - Reserve), 1782 (Armagh - Metro). Scania 760 has been sold to Wilsons Auctions, along with Intercentury 1736, whilst 1668/76/8/84/1708/66 and 2044 have gone to Hamill for scrap. The first of the new Streetdeck based 40 seat single deckers to arrive at MSC is 2503 (XUI 8503); 2501 has been demonstrated to Ipswich Buses. It is believed a further 20 of these have been ordered giving 34 in total.

01/02/21 - A large number of vehicles commenced their commissioning period at the start of the year, all temporarily allocated to York Road: Optare Solo B29F+26 0015/21 (XUI 6615, 7th January), 0018/22 (18th January), 0023/4 (20th January); Volvo B11R/Sunsundegui C53F 1204/7 (XUI 7704, 8th January), 1208/9 (18th January) 1210/1/2 (26th January); Wrightbus Streetdeck H80F+13 3180-3 (XUI 8180, 7th January), 3184/5 (14th January), 3186-91 (20th January), 3192-4 (1st February). Similar buses completing their commissioning and moving on to permanent depots are 0014/5/6/8/21/2 (Lisburn),0023/4 (Coleraine), 1207-9 (Coleraine), 3163-5 (Coleraine) and 3172-6/80-2 (Derry). Scania i4 1055 has retruned to use at Newcastle following completion of accident damage repairs, whilst the following were SORN'd at the end of January: 420 (Lisburn, engine repairs), 820 (Enniskillen, fire damage), 1023 (Omagh, engine repairs), 1027 (Enniskillen, engine repairs), 1051 (Magherafelt, engine repairs), 2304 (Derry, engine repairs), 748/1675 (Downpatrick, to Reserve), 749/1884/2947 (Ards, to Reserve), 760/1661/77 (Derry, to Reserve), 1676 (Newtownabbey, to Reserve), 1911 (Newcastle, to Reserve), 1928 (Bangor, to Reserve) and 1930 (Newry, to Reserve). On the move are 2330 (Newcastle - Downpatrick), 612 (Newcastle - Stranraer), 2443 (Newcastle - Newtownabbey), 1035 (Dungannon - Enniskillen), 1941 (Lisburn - Newry), 1779 (Downpatrick - Stranraer - Downpatrick), 1778 (Downpatrick - Stranraer), 1940 (Lisburn - Omagh), 495 (Derry - Armagh), 1936/7 (Lisburn - Metro), 460 (Derry - Newtownabbey), 1943 (Lisburn - Newtownards), 2329 (Coleraine - Craigavon), 2891 (Derry - Newtownards) and 2986 (Coleraine - Magherafelt). Solo 1875 has been withdrawn from Omagh and sold to Southern Regional College, Portadown, whilst 1925 has gone to Wilson Auctions, Mallusk.

06/01/21 - December saw a glut of new vehicles allocated to York Road for initial commissioning: Wrightbus Streetdeck H47/33F+13 3168/9 (XUI 3168, 4/12), 3170/1 (11/12), 3172/3/4 (14/12), 3175/7/9 (17/12), 3178 (18/12), 3176 (22/12); Volvo B11R / Sunsundegui C53F 1200/3 (XUI 7700, 14/12), 1201/2 (18/12), 1205/6 (23/12) and Optare Solo B29F+26 0019 (XUI 6619, 09/12) and 0020 (16/12). 1201/2/5/6 later moved to Coleraine, with 0019/20 going to Lisburn. i4 1063 has returned to use at Coleraine, B7RLE 503 at Ballymena and i4 1046 at Dungannon, all after completion of engine repairs. Vehicles SORN'd at the end of December are Scania K230 421 (Lisburn, engine repairs), Solo 1933 (to Metro Reserve), i6s 2058/9 (Larne, gearbox & engine repairs respectively) and Scania L94 2409 (Armagh, engine repairs). More Intercenturies to be withdrawn are 1708 (Coleraine, chassis defects) and 1668/84 (Newtownabbey, both with bodywork defects). Solo 1867, previously loaned to the Northern Regional College, has now been sold to the same institution. On the move are 1035/63/6/70 (Coleraine - Larne), 1035 (Larne - Dungannon), 1076 (Dungannon - Larne) and 1938/9 (Lisburn - Newcastle). Intercentury 1765 and Gemini 2259 have both received overall blue repaints.

01/01/21 - Happy New Year from Irish Transport Heritage.

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