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Bus Travel
Where is the bus stop? Where is the bus stop? This site does NOT use java script! :- Online bus stop enquiry service - just input your location, road or post code, for a list of bus stops within 1000 meters, select the stop and receive the next ten buses timetabled. The description and the map indicate which side of the road the bus stop details relate to. This site also has by far the most useful bus mapping - it works, no script or flash required- unlike those below- and shows all bus stops within a km of your location (or a specific stop if you prefer). Use the location flag symbols in preference to the blue Google bus stop markers which may be slightly off-place.

Enter a post code, street and town, or bus stop name or sms stop code (eg manjdmgp):

Bus times

Jump to Timetables links
Most regionalised "Traveline" sites to the South of Cheshire offer national cross boundary journies by using the data sets from other regions. The main none-regional "traveline" front page now offers a javascript only minimized experience (without notice to the regional sites).

I have included a form to use for National journies. Most of the journey data is fairly up to date but some elements (bus stop locations) may not be refreshed for some months. Live bus journey problems are only covered by individual operator web sites or twitter feeds.

Many map services require javascript - use the bus stop location service above for a plain no-script map. Traveline will also offer a PDF form of map.

Immediately below, an input form for East Midlands England traveline for journeys to and from anywhere. They have restricted fare and timetable information. See next section for other timetables. Warning Beware the "towards" indications from Traveline, to travel from Stockport to Stepping Hill they suggest a bus "towards Manchester" - WRONG! Try "away from Manchester" instead. Traveline depends upon data supplied via a national arrangement and some sources may supply incorrect or corrupt files from time to time. Few operating SMA (Manchester) buses were listed for 2nd Jan 2017 and SMA were operating top secret timetables Jan 3rd to 6th- not even available on their own website leaving many people waiting for buses that were not running. Many bus diversions occur (sometimes for weeks) without any local notice or advice to Traveline.

National Journey Details National coverage from Traveline East Midlands:
IMPORTANT: traveline INSISTS on giving you train times when you don't want them, and prioritising them to bus times. If you see a train service, there may also be unreported bus services. sigh.
From: To:
I want to on
You can plan journeys from and to a postcode, postal address, town or village, named station or stop, or point of interest, but do NOT include the name of the County.
Means Of Transport      
Do try not to call Travelines 0871 telephone number which is a premium call- as at 7/15 it cost 12p per minute PLUS the operators charge which may be over 40p per minute- total over 50p per minute! Definitely a premium charge. And they couldn't assist me when I was waiting for buses that never came either. saynoto0870

A lovely html (scrapable) format of timetable is available from the regional traveline websites, but only for their area, not nationwide. Here are some timetable resources:
East Midlands (places South of Cheshire and Yorkshire excluding TfL London area)  

Transport for Greater Manchester TfGM timetables or go for the list of bus numbers at new Timetables page which works but is not ideal and some links don't go to the right timetables due to apparent OCR errors. Timetables in pdf format- these are the official timetables and you will see that the high frequency services still have the restrictions (1) "at least every 10 minutes" (no detailed data) and (2) No part route services listed within those ten minutes.

Many South Manchester buses are operated by Stagecoach and some by First, - but their own web sites are utterly unusable. (Incorrect use of css and javascript and images). Regretfully the times of Stagecoach Manchester buses 3rd-6th January 2017 were secret, not available from ANY source- Stagecoach stated "holiday service" which is useless when no details can be found!

The old county of Cheshire was split in two in 2009 (on 1st April no less) and subsequently subsidised bus services virtually disappeared, notably journies to neighbouring counties almost ceased.

Cheshire no longer has its own bus timetables in accessible format. There are almost no buses anyway. Vast swathes of the the UK now have no buses at all, many only one a week!
Derbyshire Timetables || Lancashire also no longer have their own accessible bus timetables. Flintshire bus timetables

Bus route maps Maps of bus services (NOTE These maps may not show the latest route or service changes.): Cheshire West local area maps  ||  Derbyshire
Greater Manchester area bus route maps are split into large areas, the maps are enormous (7MB plus) pdf documents. May also be a month or so out of date. If you know the bus route number, the timetable (SEE ABOVE) includes a rough map.

Free buses in Greater Manchester::- Important Note: Manchester roads are subject to wholesale closure for road works and special events. The shuttle buses divert without notice (in one case for 5 months) and without any indication of diverted routes. Cessation of routes for events may be marked on stops. but diversions are usually not indicated on stops. Treat the online maps as indicative and be ready for a long walk.
Manchester's three free bus routes were reduced to two without any notice on 28/10/2018, also the routes were radically amended, but now run Mon-Sat, every 10 minutes until 6.30pm then every 15 minutes until 10pm. On Sundays and Bank Holidays every 12 minutes but only from 9.30am to 6pm.
There is one free circular bus in Bolton, one free circular shuttle bus in Stockport.
tfgm metroshuttle maps.

Travelling in Manchester? Note that the tram and rail networks are subject to significant works and disruption. The tram service between Piccadilly Station and Victoria Station is one tram every 12 minutes (Route Bury-Piccadilly Station, Line 4). Free Bus 1 from Piccadilly Station will stop at the top end of St Anns Square where Market Street meets St Mary's Gate, from where you can walk on to Victoria Mon-Fri 'til 10pm - very restricted Sunday free bus service.
Trams are subject to frequent bus replacement which is not always clearly indicated or signposted. The tram web site can be wrong. Additionally, there are frequent road closures and bus diversions in Manchester (the Council close the city centre frequently for any reason at all!). It is best to avoid Manchester or assume an extra hour on your journey and note it is usually faster to walk due to severe traffic congestion.

Twitter feeds for: Stagecoach Manchester    ||   High Peak buses   

Manchester Trams Manchester tram map
NOTE that some tram routes differ on a Sunday or if there is disruption or work- the info at stops almost tells you this but Manchester Metrolink are spectacularly poor at communications. Some routes shown are part time only, and again the details are a closely guarded secret.
Trams are intended to run at least every 12 minutes, but NOT to a timetable and road conditions can cause long gaps or bunching. First and last tram times are on the tram stops but not in a helpful format, and not always up to date or accurate. Be aware that trams stop quite early in the evening especially on a Sunday. You MUST have a ticket before boarding, there are no exceptions (even if the ticket machines are all broken) unless first you use the call point at the tram stops for consent to travel (and a reference number- have a pen handy!): if you have difficulty, DON'T just get on a tram (penalty £100).

ANIMALS ARE NOT PERMITTED ON METROLINK TRAMS (except very special prebooked medical journies) - you can usually take your dog on a bus or train, but they are not allowed on the trams. Assistance dogs are permitted but may find the often highly crowded conditions unduly stressful. Consider alternatives if you have any travel difficulties.

UK Train times and fares: Penalty fares are in place at many stations and on many routes. In some places you are required to use a card to purchase a ticket (ticket machines have no cash slots) and some tickets can ONLY be purchased with smart phones.

CARE- Treat all sources of information with doubt especially if your journey is more than a week in the future! Take plenty of food and drink as even a local one hour journey could end up taking six hours (discovered the hard way...). Train services are now highly unreliable.
Check shortly before travelling and assume regular cancellations. Do not rely on making any connections. Don't expect information or help.

When travelling, beware of using the so called "information points" at railway stations. Calls are a time restricted telephone call to an off-shore call centre, where English is poor, and information is less than is available on line. They can offer no assistance if you need help and no information on any operating problems. The calls are automatically disconnected, usually before you receive any information. Try a mobile call to the station operator- the number may be on a poster at or near the station. Expect to be stranded.

To access the official railway data, no javascript or cookies required- use Accessible UK Train Timetables which has the full official data -as up to date as exists for times- but for fares, there are severe problems with the web site for some journeys.
Note that a ticket price may only cover one particular train booked at one location at one instant! It may be cheaper to split your ticket, especially if you can move a portion of the journey out of peak hours, reduce cross county boundary journeys, or take advantage of greater discounts for shorter journies.
If it goes wrong, remember: if delayed over 30 minutes, have the guard initial/stamp your ticket, keep your ticket, and apply for "compensation", which starts at a minimum of 20% for an hours delay, and depending on operator, may be 100% or rarely more. You may need to contact "Passenger Focus" to resolve problems.
The official National Rail website

Enjoy reading Today's UK train delays which only covers major disruption -and Cleared incidents- Train operater Northern lists details of MOST (not all) delays at Journeycheck but even this can mislead as operational decisions are made and remade on the fly.

Note that in 2018 operators have been avoiding reporting cancelled trains by simply reissuing the timetable a few hours beforehand, you need to check and recheck.

WALES: New operator Oct 2018- can they do worse than Arriva did, who went out by cancelling most of their last trains! Welsh disruptions may be reported on Transport for Wales train disruption page. You may find yourself on a bus you didn't know about (or standing on a platform as a replacement bus whizzes past outside!) or stranded in the middle of uninhabited countryside with no assistance.

UK Live Train Arrival and Departure Boards gives arrivals and departures in the next few hours. NOTE a train shows as NO REPORT until it passes a reporting point. From NationalRail
Beware of duplicated station names! Do you want Adlington (Lancs) or Adlington (Ches)!

With details of booked train paths including freight and steam specials. The train may not run or may be delayed or cancelled or rerouted. The headcode (eg 1G45) indicates the class of train- starting with a 1 or 2 for passenger, and 4,6,7,8 for freight while 5 is empty carriages. The Ind code may be Working TimeTable(WTT), Variation (VAR), Short Term (special- generally needs up to an hour to be passed around the system once started) (STP), or CANcelled. Click on the headcode for route information. Enter a station, site or junction name. Pass means it passes the point without stopping. NR means No Report- if you see this at a station the train is meant to stop at, the train may have been diverted at short notice.

As an alternative, requiring javascript to work but with more data than the above- Open Rail (Charlwood House) live rail - requires TIPLOC code or station 3 letter code for best results (see next link). The best for tracking route diversions- you need to locate the train on its scheduled route then select the train to find out where it really went.

Station codes - eg three letter station (TLS) codes used for example by manual ticket office or train crew machines, useful if you are told they can't issue a ticket to a station. For example in Manchester a ticket to TLC/CRS/NRS MCZ (which may print on the ticket as Manchester CTLZ) includes travel on central zone Metrolink trams from your central Manchester rail station of choice to the city centre. TLC codes originally referred (as CRS or NRS) to Reservation Systems and are now used under the generic title "three letter codes" for station locations.
The NLC code for Manchester with central Metrolink travel is 0451 (sometimes as 045100), compared to Manchester Stations which is 0438. Link to Phil's web site with list of CRS (aka TLC and also NRS), NLC, TIPLOC and STANOX codes. .

Railway fares in the UK are a nightmare, and very often the headline price - the one you will probably be charged- is not the cheapest fare available, despite regulations to the contrary. You can also lose a lot of money in penalty fares if you accidentally get on a train not appropriate to the fare you have paid- and it is very none obvious. While I don't like linking to sites that require javascript, hurrah for a US based website that gives FULL details of ticket restrictions and fares.

What routes ARE permitted? Not easy to find out and not all obvious routes are permitted while some odd ones are- in theory if National Rail suggest a route and DO NOT say separate tickets are required, a route is permitted- but the usual dislocations may amend this for short periods of time! Official ATOC routeing guide to the rescue. A set of PDF files which, if you work through them carefully and as directed will tell you just how complex routeing really is - and what is and isn't permitted. Be sure to check the "easements" section as some are negative easements, forbidding journeys more generally or logically permitted. Unfortunately permitted routes seem to be changeable without notice and apparently without any formally recognised procedure.

Twitter feeds for: Northern Rail    ||   Metrolink (Manchester)

If you are in the UK and going abroad, an extremely useful - essential- web site to look to is the UK Foreign Office travel advice section - (free FO publications).

MAPS A map always comes in handy. Try this friendly and fast no-javascript option:
(No Javascript navigation: You move the map by clicking the arrows around the borders, zoom using clicking the different lengths of white line: shorter line= zoom in!)
  smart Place OS Grid (E/N)  
Note: Streetmap allows you to enter the OS Landranger reference eg TL356142 using the default smartsearch option. To use the Easting/Northing OS NGR convention eg 535626, 214182 you should select OS grid button above.

Mapping with javascript required and footpaths well shown from
Also requiring javascript, a wide choice of mapping tiles (style) from
The icon in top right of both of these maps allows you to change the appearance of the map tiles.
Also Open Street Map and Open Street Browser. Alas Open Street Browser requires a more modern script than I have but mostly works- I just can't use the search or the layers. (Open Street Map search has a limited use search facility via Nominatim with restricted bandwidth. May stop functioning for a few seconds and instead use a placename only search).

In 1998, 2002, 04, 06,08, 10 and 2012 holidays were in North Wales. Be sure to check out a lovely listed building at risk- Castle Lodge, Ludlow

If you are looking for UK tourist information, best of luck, there are many content-less web sites out there with just a few really useful ones for specific localities. Generally I find the various UK tourist information centres something of a waste of space, the useful TIC is a rarity to be treasured.

LINKS TO ART GALLERIES The emphasis here is to link to pages which load fairly quickly and have useful content. And no Javascript or Adobe(tm) obstacles.
Manchester UK artworks   ||   artcyclopedia  ||    Victoria and Albert

UK Portrait Gallery    |    Search Wikimedia:

Detroit Publishing Co has a collection of old photos mostly of the USA and is a part of the wider collection at the Library of Congress.

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