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328, 329, 329A & 329E
Management
Operated by National Express West Midlands/A2Z Travel
Garage Walsall
Peak vehicle requirement
Route
Start Walsall
Via Harden, Blakenall, Bloxwich, Blakenall, Harden
End Walsall
Length About ?? Miles
Service
Level 05:45 - 18:34
Frequency Up to 10 buses per hour
Journey time 328 = 54 Minutes, 329: 42 Minutes, 329A: 42 Minutes, 329E: 14 Minutes each direction
Night No Service.

The 328, 329, 329A and 329E are four bus routes in the West Midlands, United Kingdom.

Services 328 which is operated by just A2Z Travel, 329 which is operated by both National Express West Midlands & A2Z Travel and 329A which is operated only by National Express West Midlands operate full circle bus routes via the council estates of Harden, Coalpool and Blakenall before arriving at Bloxwich, circling around the town centre and returning via the same route. The three services all follow very similar routes.

National Express West Midlands services officially terminate in Bloxwich so the route is in fact not a circluar service. However, it is still regarded as a circular. A2Z Travel services are full circle. Despite this, the route is not really a circular service at all (traditionally a circular service operates in one direction in a circular shape, with another service operating in the other direction).

Additional National Express West Midlands services 329E depart from Walsall every twenty minutes, between the town centre and Blakenall Church. Here buses turn around and return to Walsall.

The 328, 329 and 329A operate Monday - Saturday, whilst the 329A operates Monday - Fridays only. Evening and Sunday services to the area, are National Express West Midlands circulars 372 and 373, and 319.

History Edit

The origins of bus services serving the Walsall - Blakenall - Bloxwich corridor go back many years. Motorbuses served this corridor until 1955 when Walsall Corporation Transport converted this busy corridor to trolleybus operation. The trolleybus routes introduced in 1955 differed from the motorbus routes in that on arriving at Bloxwich the trolleybuses continued back to Walsall via Leamore as a circular service.

The service numbers during the trolleybus era were as follows :-

15 Walsall - Blakenall (and 30 in the opposite direction)

15 Walsall - Blakenall - Bloxwich - Leamore - Walsall (and 30 in the opposite direction)

Walsall Corporation Transport was taken over by West Midlands Passenger Transport Executive on 1 October 1969 and trolleybuses were replaced by motorbuses in 1970.

In the mid-1970's the services were converted to one man operation with the clockwise circular service number being changed from 30 to 330 and the anticlockwise service number changed from 15 to 329. Short journeys between Walsall and Blakenall became numbered 329E out of Walsall and 329 back to Walsall at this time. Around the time that "showcase" "superline" service 301 was introduced in the 1980s, circular operation of services 329/330 came to an end with buses operating Walsall - Blakenall - Bloxwich only - somewhat similar in pattern to the pre-1955 pre-trolleybus service 15.

Prior to 2007, services 329A and 329E did not operate and only National Express West Midlands operated both the 328 and 329. When they withdrew the 328 and replaced it with the 329A, A2Z Travel reintroduced operations on the 328, as well as extra buses on the 329. The 329E was introduced later by National Express West Midlands

External links Edit

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