Go North East: 5333 / BJ10VUT
Go North East's 5333 (BJ10 VUT), Mercedes Citaro 0530N/Mercedes Citaro, carrying its "Wear Tees Xpress" branding when freshly applied, and is pictured here having just arrived at Deptford depot following branding at Saltmeadows Road depot. 08/03/14
"Cobalt Clipper" branded Volvo B9TL/Wright Eclipse Gemini 2 6101-6115 and spare Volvo B9TLs 6116/17 have now entered service on Go North East's "Cobalt Clipper" routes, giving fast and frequent connections from Blyth, Whitley Bay, North Shields and the Coast Road to Newcastle & Cobalt Business Park. As such, the former allocation is now being repainted and transferred to other depots across the region to undertake their new role within the fleet.
Following the ongoing unreliability of "Wear Tees Xpress" service X7 and a great deal of lost mileage accumulated, often as a result of vehicle breakdowns which subsequently had to be towed back to the depot, the decision was made to upgrade the service. In under twelve months of the service's operation; the service will receive higher quality Mercedes Citaro 0530N/Mercedes Citaro vehicles, numbered 5333 - 5336 in the fleet. These high quality single decked vehicles will complement the high quality double decked Volvo B9TL/Wright Eclipse Gemini 2 allocation on the "Tyne Tees Xpress" services too. Reliability is hoped to improve massively, and it is hoped that this will improve passenger numbers even further. The current allocation, Volvo B10BLE/Wright Renowns 4906 - 4909, will be repainted red, and they will enter the 'spare role' fleet.
Following a period of driver familiarisation after repaint, 5333 is the first of the batch to be branded. 5334-36 are at Saltmeadows to be branded, ready for their introduction on "Wear Tees Xpress" service X7 next week.
Many thanks to the engineer who shifted the MPD out of the way, allowing me to get a photograph.