Oxford is one of those English towns (and cities) which never made it to electric trams. Instead a desultory horse tram system plodded through the historic university centre until swept away by the all conquering motor bus in the 1920s.
Today the bus is omnipresent with a bewildering array of operators and services dominating the roads in all directions. From the high frequency airport and London services (almost every ten minutes) to the town services. Soon to be joined (summer 2017) by airport coaches serving Birmingham International - the other direction up the M40 from Oxford. Park and Ride services cover the busy (and often full) large car parks sited in the approaching main roads into Oxford - add to the array of colourful parading coaches and buses. In all they make Blackpool's brief efforts at 'Metro Coastlines' route branding in the previous decade look pretty tame indeed.
I utilised a local service from the Barton area into Oxford (and back) on our recent family visit this week. A smart double deck into town and a Oxfordbus Citaro back on the 8 Service. The Mercedes had seen better days with a noisesome rattle all of the way - coming from loosened panels and a well worn interior. The driver admitted it was not of the best and due to be replaced by new (or newer) double deck buses by the operator.
Not one green and cream bus in sight. A few samples of the colourful bus parade:
All images taken within 40 minutes in Oxford on Tuesday afternoon.
Brookes University sponsored grey and black - ideas for BTS perhaps?
gold and black premium service looking very smart. A new shopping centre (actually a total rebuild) plus county library in the background.
That rattling Citaro not obviously noted for its longevity ! Barton terminus 27 Dec.