#AYearOfBuses 41: Red Express Accrington – Ramsbottom – Manchester
We’re heading to the opposite side of Transdev territory for today’s winner on #AYearOfBuses – it’s The Blackburn Bus Company’s Red Express.
Red Express is one of The Blackburn Bus Company’s flagship interurban routes. Using a fleet of smartly branded high-spec double deckers, it connects Accrington with Ramsbottom and Manchester, up to every 30 mins through the daytime.
A long-standing route cross-county route, the X41 has been through quite a few changes over the years, but its mission has remained the same – to swiftly carry folk from East Lancashire into Manchester, plugging a gap where there’s traditionally been at best, a woefully inadequate competing rail service.
The route was revitalised in 2016 with heavily refurbished Wright-bodied Volvo B7TLs, painted in a striking red and blue Best Impressions-designed livery, launching both the route, and Transdev’s exciting new vision for buses in Blackburn and Lancashire.
The Ramsbottom part was only introduced last year. The Red Express used to run direct to Blackburn from Accrington too. That part was withdrawn last year due to low usage and the fact the 6/7 high frequency buses exist for Blackburn.