I’ve yet to get over to Southampton to sample First’s 30th April changes. May be at the weekend, or the following one, I don’t know. But there’s much you can do these days by travelling vicariously, via the web.
the week before in Fareham. It’s the first network to fall under significant scrutiny since the UK Bus senior management change. First has rewritten the Soton rule book in providing a locally managed change that’s radical and different. By producing a rather stand-out timetable, First has chosen *not* to spoil the ship for a ha’peth of tar. Indeed, there have been a variety of good promotion materials.
“Questions are now being asked, and unfavourable comparisons made, with strong management teams at rivals Stagecoach and Go Ahead”—Investors’ ChronicleWednesday’s Investors’ Chronicle feels that the future First’s bus division looks “bleak” as shares plunged by a third. All eyes will therefore be on Southampton as First hopes to demonstrate that it can breathe new life into tired networks and reap the benefits in terms of network growth in difficult times. While I’m sure it will be easy to find fault with something—perhaps incorrect flag numbering, a timetable case untouched—this has been a very strong effort from a subsidiary that shows real signs of turning the corner from an otherwise lacklustre performer.
I’m sure that some detractors might experience problems but we at Omnibuses wish the First galley team well in preparing the Reddy meals in its lively Kitchin.