Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Day 19 Bournemouth to Lymington

23rd May 2016

Service 33 at Christchurch
I arrived back in Bournemouth from Lancaster mid-afternoon and in good time to continue the journey east. Of all the bus routes that link Bournemouth and Christchurch Yellow Buses' service 33 is the least frequent and least direct, featuring at one point a massive inland diversion to serve Bournemouth Royal Hospital. It is, however, on the whole the most coastal, so I joined the 14.55hrs departure from Bournemouth. Unfortunately, a road closure meant that the route as far as Boscombe followed the main road, rather than the coast itself and we also picked up a load of schoolchildren at one point, although in the modern way they were mostly engrossed in their "screens" rather the causing the mayhem they were once feared for!  However, it was a good job I was following the route on my OS map as it wasn't otherwise apparent that my bus had arrived in Christchurch.  Monday is market day, when the High Street is given over to the street market and this affects where the buses stop.  It also affected my next bus - the X1 to Lymington.  To be fair, it was clear from the information on the bus stop that the X1 did not stop there on Mondays; what would have been helpful was some indication of where it did actually stop instead!

I could see a bus stop across a dual-carriageway accessible only via a subway that looked as if it
Service X1 at its market day stop in Christchurch
might be the one. With only 5 minutes before the bus was due I had no choice but to give it a try. Again, there was nothing at the stop to say that the X1 stopped there: the information displays were provided by one bus company - Yellow Buses - whereas the X1 is run by a company that now trades under the improbable name of "more" (lower case throughout!).  Suppressing the thought that I could have done with "more" information I surveyed the waiting queue and decided that they looked the sort of people who would he waiting for a longer-distance bus rather than a local service. (Years of experience in buses have given me this skill - I once identified the correct stand for a market-day only bus to Boston in Peterborough bus station solely on the make-up of the queue).

The  X1 was not exactly direct, but did follow the coast with views from the top deck of the Isle of Wight as we passed through Barton-on-Sea and again from Milford-on-Sea before depositing me outside Lymington's now closed bus station just along the High Street from my hotel.  I had read reviews of the hotel before booking and was amused by how many people had commented on the awkwardness and cost of the car parking arrangements, common nowadays with town centre hotels, and so I was ready for the receptionist's question as to whether I had come by car - and the relief on his face when I said I had not.

Day 18  Weymouth to Bournemouth                                 Day 20 Lymington to Portsmouth

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