Saturday, 11 June 2016

2016 - Day Out 03: Weston-Supre-Mare

Its time to go out on the coaches again and we catch Greenline Coaches for a day trip to Weston-Super-Mare.

The Grand Pier at Weston-Super-Mare
I leave the house at 7.50am and make my way into Wollaston, where after a few minutes wait, the National Express West Midlands Service 276 arrives and I board and just as we depart Wollaston at 8.05am, I send the obligatory text to Mr UKBuses to tell him that we are on the way. After 5 minutes we pass through Norton, where Mr UKBuses boards and we then make our way into Stourbridge, where we alight the bus at Stourbridge Interchange and make our way to the coach boarding point in Birmingham Street. After about 10 minutes wait and a "fresh air" break, we are surprised when the Greenline Coaches mini coach pulls up, as we board we are informed that we are meeting up with the main coach en-route. We make our way to Hagley where we expect to change onto the main coach, but we keep on going and after about 20 minutes we arrive in the suburbs of BromsgroveMarlbrook to be more precise and pull over at a bus stop outside of The Toby Carvery, where we wait for our main coach. We are surprised when a Nash's coach, see picture below right, pulls up behind us and our driver informs us to alight and board the coach behind.

Nash Coaches
We board our coach and we are told it is a free for all and to sit where we like, luckily we are able to sit next to each other and get the last couple of remaining seats on the back row. A passenger in front of us tells me that I look uncomfortable and that I haven't got a lot of leg room, which she basically meant that she wants me to move so she can sit next to her mate. I get myself comfortable in my original seat and find out that I have no problem with the leg room at all and once Mr UKBuses has belted up, we leave Bromsgrove behind and make our way to Weston-Super-Mare. We make our way through the suburbs of Bromsgrove and when we arrive at Wychbold, we join the M5 Motorway at Junction 5 and head southbound. We travel about 50 miles where we stop at MichaelWood services to have some "fresh air" and stretch our legs and as we alight, Mr UKBuses has decided to stay on the coach, well he nearly did as he forgot to take his seat belt off as he tried to stand up.

After our break, we make our way back to the coach, having some "fresh air" before boarding and after everyone has boarded, we make our way back onto the M5 Motorway and we pass Bristol and Portishead and after about 30 miles, we leave the M5 at Junction 21 and make our way through the suburbs of Weston-Super-Mare, arriving on the sea front at approximately 11.45am. Mr UKBuses decides to cut his body in half again as he forgets to undo his seat belt for the second time and after he has unbuckled himself, we alight the coach into the fabulous pouring rain, which started as we arrived on the sea front. There is only one thing for us to do now whilst the rain is pouring, we kill two birds with one stone and as we are hungry and getting wet, we quickly walk along the seafront, with me jumping over the sea wall so that I can try and take a picture of a First Bristol, Bath and The West bus which has been painted in traditional Badgerline livery for Mr UKBuses. With the picture taken we carry on with our walk and a bit further down the seafront, we pass the Grand Pier and arrive at our destination.

Cheers From The Cabot Court Hotel
We head into J D Wetherspoon's "The Cabot Court Hotel" where we can dry off and also have some lunch. Luckily it was not as busy as it was on our previous visit and get served virtually straight away. With the drinks purchased, we find a seat and peruse the menu before we order some much needed food. Mr UKBuses opts for his usual BBQ Chicken Melt (minus the melt!) and I opt for a Beer and Burger meal. It doesn't take long for our meal to arrive and we tuck in, see picture left. After the food has been devoured and we make use of the facilities after finishing off our drinks (and we didn't have to go far!), we make our way back out onto the seafront where it has now stopped raining. We make our way into the town centre and along Regent Street where we take our first bus ride of the day and we board a Crosville service 103 bus to Searles Crescent. We purchase our WestonRider tickets and take a seat and after about 15 minutes we arrive at our destination.

Coombs Travel Depot
With no seat belts to decapitate Mr UKBuses, we alight at Searles Crescent and the bus stop is directly opposite the First Bristol, Bath and The West depot in Weston-Super-Mare. A few photographs are taken and after taking what we could we have a little walk a few hundred yards down the road, where pictures are taken of vehicles parked up at the depot of Coombs Travel, see picture right. With the pictures taken at both travel companies depots and the lunchtime pint taking its toll, we have a slow walk down the road, where luckily, there is an Asda store with customer toilets available for use. We didn't buy anything but we did make use of the customer toilets. After using the customer facilities, we make our way back to the bus stop by the Asda store and we have a choice of buses back to Weston-Super-Mare and as we caught the Crosville service to Searles Crescent, we decide to use the First Bristol, Bath and The West service 3 back. We travel along virtually the same route into Weston-Super-Mare and after 15 minutes we are back and alight at Regent Street. Upon alighting, Mr UKBuses spots the Badgerline liveried bus that was spotted earlier, so he decides to sprint ahead and get a better photograph of it.

Crosville Service 100 at Sand Bay Terminus
With the little sprint taking its toll on Mr UKBuses, we decide to have a pint and head into J D Wetherspoon's "The Dragon Inn", but after seeing how busy it was and also a stag party taking place, we decide to have a drink elsewhere and we just go around the corner where we pop into "The Tavern In The Town". We have a bit of time to kill before we catch our next bus, so we take a seat and have a rest with Mr UKBuses deciding to sit by facing towards the television so he can watch a bit of the Euro 2016 football action. It is nearly time for our next bus, so we finish our drinks and make our way across the road where we catch Crosville's Service 100, where we take our seats upstairs in the fresh air. We make our way along the seafront and after twenty minutes, we arrive at Sand Bay where we alight to take a few photographs, see picture left and a very, very quick "fresh air" break before we board again and take our open top seats and make our way back into Weston-Super-Mare, spotting some bikes stuck up some trees along the way! We arrive back in Weston-Super-Mare and alight at Regent Street.

Mr UKBuses, The Pimp!
Time for another pint and we make our way back into "The Dragon Inn", which is now much quieter and as the sun is shining brightly know, we decide to sit outside to catch some rays. Mr UKBuses decides to go a bit further and sits out on the tables outside the café next door, that is until an employee from the café tells him off and he takes a seat at a table outside of The Dragon Inn, which actually belong to the pub this time. After some "fresh air", we finish our drinks and decide to have a walk down to the sea front, so we walk down Regent Street and arrive at the sea front. We still have a bit of time to kill, so after being handed a flyer for "2 drinks for £5", we decide to head into "Ella's Bar", there is no real ale here so we decide to have a pint of lager and Mr UKBuses gets a seat with his Harlem of women sitting with him, see picture right, whilst I nearly fall flat on my face when I enter the gentleman's toilets as there is a step right behind the door.

Cheers from Ellas Bar!
We rest our legs and enjoy the atmosphere and also enjoy the music blaring out. It is 80's hour and some classic songs are being played such as Nena's "99 Red Balloons". The pub starts to get busier, with a stag party coming in and I have a bone to pick with one of them as he has a T-Shirt with "Milky Bar Kid" on his back, so I go over and inform him that there is only one Milky Bar Kid in this town and seeing as I'm much blonder, I take the prize! It is nearly time to get to our coach for our journey back home, so Mr UKBuses leaves his women behind, see picture left and we make our way outside and walk up the seafront to our pick up point. Luckily nearby are some toilets, so I decide to make use of the facilities which also cost me 20p for the privilege. It is just before 6.00pm, and after some "fresh air", our coach pulls up and we board and take our seats at the back of the coach and with everyone on board we leave Weston-Super-Mare behind and make our way back to the West Midlands.

We join the M5 Motorway again at Junction 21 and make our way northbound hoping that I can get a good signal as I'm reading live updates on qualifying for the Canadian Grand Prix. After an hour and a half and 75 miles, the coach pulls of the Motorway for a brief stop at Strensham Services, with Mr UKBuses remembering to take off his seatbelt before alighting. After a quick bladder stop and "fresh air" break, we get some chocolate for our last leg of the journey and reboard the coach. With everyone back on, we rejoin the M5 and make our way back to Bromsgrove, where in a layby near Rubery, we alight our coach and get change onto our mini Greenline Coach which takes us back to Stourbridge, via Bell End and Hagley. We alight in Birmingham Street and having missed National Express West Midlands service 276, we decide to catch a taxi back home. Mr UKBuses gets dropped off first, and I get dropped off in Wollaston where I have a nightcap or two in The Unicorn, which is very quiet for a Saturday night, but seeing as England are playing their Euro 2016 match and The Unicorn not having a television, I enjoy the peace and quiet before making my way back home to rest my legs.

Despite the changing weather, a good day out was had, even though we didn't actually go all the way to Weston-Super-Mare on a Greenline Coach, I would normally thank the driver, but despite not giving his name out after we boarded, I can't really say thank you. I can thank Mr UKBuses though for his company on the day, even though I had to put up with his Bald Spot:

Bald Spot 1

Bald Spot 1: The Bald Spot passes the Sweet Shop!

Bald Spot 2

Bald Spot 2: The Bald Spot is feeling all Scottish as he passes Jock after he has been to The Tavern In The Town!

Bald Spot 3: The Bald Spot is on his way to The First Bristol, Bath and The West Depot in Weston-Super-Mare!

Bald Spot 4

Bald Spot 4: The Bald Spot is interested in becoming a bus driver!

Bald Spot 5: The Bald Spot is caught in the act trying to get into Coombs Travel Depot!