Magical mystery tours on the 218 Bakewell bus route

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On April 29, I waited for the 1530 218 bus from Bakewell to Sheffield. After 15 minutes, I thought I must somehow have missed it and set off up the road.

Soon afterwards the bus in question came past me, going into the village.

I boarded when it came out again at 1600 and was told it had broken down. This was no great surprise to me.

If I’d been told that the 218 had blasted off from Meadowhall, orbited the earth several times, splashing down in Dam Flask before leaving Sheffield, it would not have surprised me, because the company which runs the 218 route has a history of bizarre incidents on it’s routes.

On one occasion the 215 became filled with smoke and was about to catch fire when the passengers had to be evacuated at Calver Slough.

The same circumstances occurred on the 65 at Taddington.

On neither occasion was a replacement bus sent out, nor when the 218 stopped at Baslow completely one freezing January morning after crawling at around 5mph from Bakewell.

These buses pass through the Hallam Constituency, and I wonder whether the MP for this area – the Deputy Prime Miniister Nick Clegg – really understands what unreliable , infrequent or non existent public transport means, so I’ll tell him.

It means unnecessary hardship and misery in a city which 40 years ago, pre-Thatcher – was progressive, and that included a bus system which was held as an shining example of a socialist policy sucess.

I suppose HS2 will be very nice for business and political people subsidised by the rest of us.

I’ll still be thumbing for lifts.

Philip Hutchinson

Abbey Lane , Sheffield S8