Prior to 1932, Hull Corporation was tram orientated as far as public transport was concerned. The most recent extension to the tramway network had taken place as recently as 1930. Having said this, it seemed to be that while existing tram routes were extended, trams were not seen as a viable proposition for completely new routes. This is evident by the Corporation’s abortive attempt, in 1929, to gain parliamentary authority to operate trolleybuses along the newly developed Preston Road (East Hull Estate) housing estate. Trolleybuses were seen as being more flexible operationally and simpler and cheaper to provide extensions and the infrastructure was less costly than for tramways. In the event the requisite authority was no obtained, and the order placed with Guy Motors for BTX trolleybuses was hastily amended to FCX motorbuses, this accounted for the first large intake of motorbuses.
The next factor which altered the Corporation’s public transport policies was the departure of Mr. E S Rayner as General Manager of the undertaking. Mr. Rayner had designed the Hull tram 101, which was of an advanced design. Mr. Rayner was replaced as General Manager in 1931 by Mr. D P Morrison, who had held the same position at Dundee. He had been responsible for the move from trams to buses in Dundee, and his influence was soon felt in Hull also. The most noticeable difference, to the travelling public, was the change from crimson and white to azure blue for the bus fleet, the trams remained in their original livery. The shade of blue darkened over the years, and the darker shade became known in the industry as ‘Hull Azure’. The blue and white livery persisted in Hull up to the advent of the Stagecoach corporate livery in the 1990’s. Less noticeable to the public was the gradual shift of emphasis from trams to buses. At this time the Corporation was still feeling the effects of the 1930 Road Traffic Act, as the Corporation had to apply to the Ministry of Transport for authority to operate bus services, rather than the local police or Watch Committee as hitherto.
As stated earlier, the Corporation was now operating motorbuses along the Preston Road, and Hd also purchased the Sutton services from East Yorkshire Motor Services Ltd. In addition to this new housing estates were being built further from the centre, than were reached by the tram routes, and they were being served by motorbuses from the outset. East Yorkshire was operating bus services in the outer suburbs of Hull also. This situation led to certain routes being served by Corporation Trams and buses and also by East Yorkshire buses. Each was vying for passengers along these routes, which led to a large number of vehicles on the roads. Both operators were developing services and many passengers were using the inner and outer suburban services for comparatively short journeys. In order to minimize delay to longer services, both the Corporation and East Yorkshire held a series of meetings in order to resolve the problem. The outcome of all these deliberations was the well known co-ordination agreement of July 1934. Taking effect from 29th July, the agreement split up the city into two zones. The inner, or ‘A’ zone, covered the area in which the trams had originally operated along Hessle Road, Anlaby Road, Chanterlands Avenue, Newland and across to Stoneferry, Ings Road, Bilton Grange, Greatfield and Marfleet. Beyond this was the outer or ‘B’ zone, which covered the outer suburbs of Haltemprice (Hessle, Anlaby, Willerby and Cottingham) to Dunswell, Wawne, Swine, Preston, Hedon and Paull. Beyond this zone, sometimes erroneously called the ‘C’ zone, was the sole preserve of East Yorkshire and any other smaller operators who had services which entered the city. These operators were not party to the agreement, and they retained any revenue collected regardless of zone.
Bus and Tram network at the date of co-ordination 29th July, 1934.
Under the agreement, the ‘A’ zone was the sole preserve of the Corporation, and fares collected for travel within the zone went to the Corporation. In the ‘B’ zone the fares were split 50/50 between the Corporation and the company, with both partners operating the same mileage within the zone. This latter fact led to some routes being operated by either of the partners, in order to balance the mileages.
As a result of the agreement the business of F Sharpe of Hedon was purchased jointly by both operators, and stage services were jointly licensed by both partners; the purchase took place in November, 1935. It is believed that the vehicles were disposed of by East Yorkshire, but neither operator used them in service.
Generally speaking the fares for trams, and later trolleybuses, were 1d cheaper than motorbuses over the same route, thus encouraging passengers who were travelling wholly within the A zone to use trams rather than buses, these protected fares were not removed until September 1962, by which time the trolleybus abandonment programme was well under way.
The co-ordination agreement continued virtually unchanged, except for the substitution of trams by trolleybuses, in the period 1937 to 1945, until 28th December 1969, when the A and B zones were combined and the revenue from the combined zones was split 70/30 in favour of the Corporation. This reflected the increased mileage within the B zone which was now being operated by the Corporation. This amendment paved the way for one man operation by both partners, by simplifying the ticketing arrangements especially that of East Yorkshire as it now no longer needed the three sets of Willebrew tickets which had been needed previously by EYMS. Also it reflected the much smaller number of journeys operated wholly within the A zone.
The agreement was again modified in 1973, this was to reflect the changing revenue and mileages, and thereafter it remained unchanged for eight years. During 1981 the relationship between the partners was getting strained, as the City Council wished to increase the rents fore stands in the Coach Station, as the original agreement had provided for East Yorkshire to use stand within the Coach Station, but by the late 70’s services had increased that the Council’s own bus services were having to use outside stands situated around the City Centre. A series of discussions took place between East Yorkshire and the Council, but the outcome was abortive, and relations became so strained that the agreement was terminated on 15th May 1981. East Yorkshire’s buses were evicted from the covered stands and were to use open stands around the perimeter and adjacent streets. The Council’s own services were now able to use the covered stands within the Coach Station. East Yorkshire countered this by refusing to accept the Council’s concessions on any of its services, except for the services which were still jointly licensed and financially supported by the City Council. To identify these services they were numbered under 100. In August 1981 the City Council allowed the four joint services, 3, 6, 13 and 16, back into the Coach Station, albeit on the northern open stands.
It was unfortunate that the co-ordination agreement, which had served the population of the City for forty seven years, had broken down, but in the light of the 1985 Transport Act, it would have ended anyway, as it would have been seen as contravening the competition which was deemed to be necessary to benefit the travelling Public.
Please see attached table for list of services co-ordinated with East Yorkshire at the outset of the agreement in July, 1934.
15/05/12 - 08:02
EYMS made the first move writing to The Tramways Department in 1929 seeking, in essence, to take over the bus routes but not the tram routes. They were rebuffed at first as they demanded Hull's financial information but gradually negotiations were started. They were very drawn out, so much so that Hull had new buses in store for over a year.
No details about how the area boundaries were selected appear to have survived. the "B" area was just not the suburbs served by EYMS but included Gypsyville, North Hull Estate, Hall Road, Sutton and the northern part of Bilton Grange estate.
At first frequencies were integrated e.g. in November 1935 buses along Cottingham Road from the city centre bus ran at 05, 10, 15*, 20, 25, 30*, 35, 40, 45*, 50, 55, 00*, the * being EYMS. Similar arrangements were in place on Hessle Road, Anlaby Road and Spring Bank West. I am not certain when this stopped
Matters were supervised by a Joint Coordination Committee which met quarterly so that decision making was very slow.
Both parties were in favour of the limited stop policy even though its replacement with a minimum fare system was discussed in 1958.
In the late 1960s when joint operation of the 15C/17C circulars was started EYMS drivers took industrial action because they were paid less than KHCT drivers.
I am still uncertain about it being a success or not. It always seemed an irritant to KHCT staff but it was also a convenient excuse for doing nothing.
Malcolm J Wells
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Old Bus Photos from 11:53 Saturday 25th April 2009 to 02:16 Thursday 23rd May 2013