The Amazing Cambridgeshire Busway

The World's longest Guided Busway Is almost ready to go.  Built on the track bed of the former Cambridge - St Ives railway that was sold for scrap it has generated a war of words between proponent Cambridgeshire County Council and a motley rabble of bearded anoraks and major PITA CAST.IRON who seeming just wanted to object for the sake of it. This website presents a record of the continuing media coverage.
Picture courtesy Cllr Pegram's blog

Busway looks to be in great condition!

News reports and interviews - all in glorious Cast.Iron railway-to-nowhere-ScrapVision


April 02 - Back to reality

April 01 - Announcement

Boring, boring.  Frankly we're fed up with the constant work updating the site, with articles that are, frankly mostly rehashing OLD arguments against the busway written by a bunch of trainspotters and railtech zealots.  They just don't get it do they!  The guided busway is a proven technology that WILL supplant rail, as it gives the flexibility and cost savings over the 19th Century railtech.  Look, Mr Phillips and your crew,  (Toot! Toot!) just forget it, rail is done, sold for scrap!!  Buses are the future for local transport.  Look, they've even got WI-FI on board, leather seats and Ham Sandwiches!  You don't get that on the 8:15 to KingsX do you?  You can't even buy a cup of coffee onboard, nevermind spill it over your laptop when braking at the lights.  So, chaps, get out a bit more, but leave your anoraks at home!  Anyway, rant over, we've decided to close the site to new entries. I'll leave the site online until the hosting fees become due, then that's it.
What do you think? Should we carry on? Let us know

April 01 - Jurassic Theme for Busway - Ha! obviously an April Fool article!! Cambridge News

March 31st - Little progress made on correcting defects on the St Ives to Cambridge Guided Busway: Hunts Post 24 website

March 25th - County is obstructive and coughs up old defects document in response to an FOI request by Ian Jackson PDF document
Apparently "defects" are not the same as "snags", so he has had to make a new request.

March 15th - Edinburgh council in "bitter row with their German contractor" over tramworks, have appointed tough guy to defend themselves. The Edinburgh Evening News website

Feb (09) - Edinburgh tram contractors have tried get more money.
"Critics paint a picture of a scheme in chaos, with project managers lacking experience and out of their depth". "There were flawed initial surveys". Sounds familiar? The Scotsman website

March 19th - DfT releases funds for Luton guided busway!
So do you still believe government when they say "lessons will be learned" ? Transport Extra website

March 19th - St Ives-Cambridge: Breakthrough on guided bus stalemate: Hunts Post 24 website

March 18th - Guided Busway is a transport disaster by Mike Mason PDF documentPage 1   PDF documentPage 2   PDF documentPage 3   PDF documentPage 4

Reformatted version PDF document

March 17th - Letter: County council needs to take legal advice Hunts Post 24 website

March 17th - BamBam to give talk on 'how to build busway' - took a radical approach: 50% overbudget! Cambridge News

March 16th - Date for opening expected after busway 'progress': Cambridge News

March 11th - Cambridge News article - Losing track of the start date for bus? PDF document

March 11th - Desperate, council peddles old video of busway. Full of old hype: "Set to REVOLUTIONISE Cambridge's traffic congestion" .. "cheaper faster and smoother than its Railtrack counterpart".   Railtrack? Thought they went out of business?   Anyway, remember it's only a bloody BUS, and WHO believes a word the council says anymore.   Cue picture of councillor on his bike in a ditch!   Is he up the creek?   CCoC credibility rating now = 0% Hunts Post 24 website

March 10th: Transport minister announces 80 million funding for busway (Video): Luton Today website

March 10th - Tim Phillips interviewed on Look East: wmv video

Tim Phillips interviewed on BBC Radio Cambridgshire: mp3 audio

Cambridge News extensive coverage of The Blunderbus: PDF document

Bam! Bam! Bam! contractor attacks council over guided bus criticism: Cambridge News

Dismay over paralysed busway: Cambridge News

From our 'you couldn't make it up guv, department' - Luton busway to get gov funding!: BBC News

The forgotten Southern section of the Guided Busway, photos taken early January 2010:

Concrete pads  and  The route to the Trumpington P&R site

Cambridge Guided Bus was a "bad idea from the start," say Lib Dems, (with one eye on elections): Hunts Post 24 website

March 10th - BAM Nuttall unhappy that CCoC have released their critical report. Brian Smith interviewed: BBC News

March 9th - Desperate Busway Team has made public a critical report to cabinet or PDF document

March 9th - Council blames contractor for guided bus delay: Cambridge News

March 3rd - Let's have REAL rail says Norman Leigh Journal website

March 2010
Flooding problems - here is a culvert and maintenance track in dry conditions - courtesy of The Cambridge Busway blog

Here it is badly flooded. Will amphibious vehicles be used on the maintenance track? Bob investigates

27th Feb - 'Biggest shambles' verdict for busway: Cambridge News

24th Feb - 161million - true cost of busway finally revealed (?) Cambridge News

23rd Feb - Cllr Mike Mason and Brian Smith interviewed on Radio Cambs Andy Harper show: mp3 audio

23rd Feb - Transport bosses take out loans to pay for guideway, total cost balloons to 161million Cambridge News Online

Councillor Mike Mason's documentation on the busway problems: PDF document

19th Feb - Bus slogan drives home anger over guideway delays: Cambridge News Online

Letter: Hardly suprising according to Cllr Mike Mason: Hunts Post 24 website

18th Feb - Letter: Pregnant lady hit by bus - you ain't seen nuthin' yet PDF document

17th Feb - Cambridge to St Ives guided busway stand-off continues: Hunts Post 24 website

15th Feb - Bus slogan displays operators's frustration over unopened busway: Blog

10th Feb - East Cambs Lib Dem says budgets will be raided for 5 million MGB legal costs

9th Feb - Guided bus delays spark anger - at last! Cambridge News Online

6th Feb - Bob Menzies 'Head of Delivery' delivers himself to conference. Let's hope he's on time! Cambridge News Online

BBC Cambridgeshire interview with Brian Smith of CCoC - there are 14,000 per day penalties (!) mp3 audio

2nd Feb - Bus operators 'hit out' at costly hold-ups to guided busway Cambridge News Online

February 2010
Cambridge to St Ives guided bus disagreements will affect council's cash flow Hunts Post 24 website

Jan29th - 1m of our tax cash may be spent on bus Cambridge News Online

Letter: Misguided in many ways Cambridge News Online

Angry response to massive cuts: Cambridge News Online

Jan 4th - No deadline set for Cambridge guided busway completion BBC News

Jan 2010
Letter: Wrong time for bus opposition - Julian Huppert wades in * Cambridge News Online

'Millions at stake after latest busway wrangle'.
Local taxpayers may subsidise costs by 1 million extra a year for long? Cambridge News Online

December 2009
Dec 4th - County press release: No worries mate! Cambridge County Council Press Release

Letter: Monorail makes long-term sense Cambridge News Online

Surprise - Guided bus 'millions of pounds over budget', court battle looms? Cambridge News Online

Well, at least someone is using the busway - Parkour/Free-running video Cambridge News Online

Dec 2nd - 'Bunker' Bob Menzies interviewed on 209Radio Drive show mp3 audio

Lit up like a Christmas Tree, but no-one's at home Cambridge News Online

Bunker Bob's little Elves 'too busy' to work over Christmas break Hunts Post 24 website

Letter: Dangers of the busway - wet feet and worse Cambridge News Online

Letter: Passengers still suffering (memory loss?) * Cambridge News Online

Letter: Environmental benefit negated - CO2 emissions mean the "concrete gutter" is not green, it's grey Cambridge News Online

Letter: No-one held to account - "so many promises made to the public enquiry have been broken" Cambridge News Online

Coleridge Conservatives - reviewing restating the case for the guided bus: Coleridge Conservatives Blog

Photo Gallery of the cycleway from cycle perspective Cycle Streets

Letter: Well done for speaking out, says Tim Philips Cambridge News Online

Video - Busway delays explained starring 'Bunker' Bob (video) Cambridge News Online

Nov 19th - Delay in other bus changes wins a warm welcome Cambridge News Online

Nov 17th - Former Cambridge Conservatives spokesman says rail was 'never a viable alternative' and makes "Flat Earth" jibe against Cast.Iron, but Tim Phillips gets the last word. Richard Normington's Blog

Letter: 116m+ price tag for 'Dumbed down' service Hunts Post 24 website

Nov 18th - Where will the bus go from here? Cambridge News Online

Pictures from The Anonymous Widower blog

Busway pictures from Big Nick Sabre website

Delay may be delayed by up to 6 months Cambridge News Online

Nov 17th - Guided bus hit by yet another delay Cambridge News Online

BBC Cambridgeshire interview with Brian Smith of CCoC - GB is not overbudget and enjoys public support (!) mp3 audio

BBC Cambridgshire Drivetime Show - Frank from Royston says the GB is a pack of lies mp3 audio

Nov 16th - BBC Cambridgeshire Drivetime Show, Tim Phillips calls for Cllr Pegram to apologise, then resign mp3 audio

Heart Cambridge: More delays to busway Heart 103 website

Guided bus facing new delay Cambridge News Online

Now the busway won't open in November, it will be January 2010 (probably) say councillors Cambs24 website

Nov 16th - Cambs council confirms yet another delay to St Ives-Cambridge guided bus link Cambs24 website

Nov 13th - I our 'you couldn't make it up' section, Cambridgeshire County Council wins 'Transport Authority of the Year' award at UK Bus Awards Cambs24 website

Nov 12th - Another Deadline Missed & concrete blocks at entrances Hunts Post 24 website

Nov 6th - Cast.Iron slams system as "Misguided and Bust" CAST.IRON

November 2009
Cambridge County Council release 'The Busway' video on YouTube.
There should be competition to spot all the dubious 'facts' offered to the viewer..On second thoughts that's just too easy.
Err, just when did you say it was opening?  What, even the video won't open on time??!!!

September 1st - Busway gritter featured Cambs24 website

Aug 22nd - Cambridge-St Ives Guided Bus: Track 'cracks are not a problem' A feature then? Hunts Post 24 website

Aug 10th - Fresh delay for guided bus route: BBC News

Aug 7th - Shona Johnstone blogs "..I am glad that at last, the end appears to be in sight." Shona Johnstone's Blog

July 24th - Shona Johnstone blogs "...we should threaten to abandon Northstowe". So why do we need the busway? Shona Johnstone's Blog

April 16th - BBC News: Busway drivers start training BBC News

April 09 - BBC News - One mile left for longest track: BBC News

The (December 2008) Busway Carol. Better late than never, and still apt in November 2009! mp3 audio

Dec 12th - Letter - Is the busway viable? Cambridge News Online

Dec - Busway in financial difficulties?   Cambridge News Online and Cambridge News Online

Oct 28th - Guided busway to use 1.8million tyres: BBC News

May - It's cracking up already! Cracks have been found in concrete beams. Don't worry it's supposed to (?)

'Bunker' Bob Menzies just ignores the problem enjoys a cup of tea on the bus in BBC Radio Cambridgshire bulletin: mp3 audio
Tim Phillips responds: mp3 audio

March - BBC News - Busway trials are run (video): BBC News

Aug 7th - Viaduct down for busway project: BBC News

March 5th - Work begins on 25km guided busway: BBC News

July 4th - Contractor for 116m busway plan: BBC News

Dec - Busway given go-ahead - Tim Phillips interviewed mp3 audio

Dec - Busway go-ahead - Initial reactions mp3 audio

July - Inquiry inspectors report finally published PDF document

Sept - Procurement document announces busway will be delivered in 2007 PDF document

July 1st - Guided Bus plans supported in leaked SRA letter
Tim Phillips and Cclr Johnstone almost trade blows in the studio    Tim Phillips: (2MB) mp3 audio   Cclr Johnstone: (2MB) mp3 audio

May 19th - Letter: Let train take the strain Cambridge News Online

April 2nd - No we didnt! - Tim Phillips in discussion with Steve Riches, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire:
Part 1: (4MB) mp3 audio   Part 2: (6MB) mp3 audio

April 1st - Star 107 News Report: CAST.IRON misled the public!   mp3 audioBulletin

March 13th - Letter: Get on the right track Cambridge News Online

March 12th - MC Shona Presents:  The Wheels On The Bus

Feb 21st - TWA plans "very detailed" according to Cllr Johnstone:
"One bit that sticks in my mind was a line from the environmental assessment part of it which said:
'A small mammal was heard eating'...a ham sandwich??" Cambridge News Online

Feb 13th - Shona Johnstone and Tim Phillips head to head BBC Radio studio debate:

mp3 audioPart 1 (6MB)   mp3 audioPart 2 (8MB)   mp3 audioNews Report    mp3 audioPart 3 (10MB)  

Feb 13th - Bedfordshire Translink Abandoned (sorry no link)

Bedfordshire CC Press Release (N/A)

Translink 90m 'an obscene amount for a white elephant':   Luton Today website

Feb 11th - 32.5 million must be borrowed by the council from the Government   Cambridge News Online

Feb 11th - Follow up news reports News bulletins on Star 107   mp3 audio(Short) &   mp3 audio(Long)

Feb 10th - Guided Bus Approved by County Councillors:   mp3 audioBBC News Report

Following news bulletins: mp3 audioFirst (confused) mp3 audioSecond mp3 audioThird

Cllr Johnstone's reposte "Absolute Rubbish": mp3 audio(8.6MB)

Feb 9th - CAST.IRON's bus budget bombshell - Government grant for guided bus is not 65 million but 32.5million

read the small print: CAST.IRON

Tim Phillips answers BBC Cambridgeshire listeners questions: mp3 audio(10.3MB)

Longer BBC report by Stuart Ratcliffe: mp3 audioReport (2MB)

Jan 5th - CAST.IRON release "Railway of Guided Bus" info sheet CAST.IRON    

Dec 18th - Government Funding pledge announced for a busway:
BBC interviews with Tony McNulty & Cllr Johnstone mp3 audio(4.2MB)


Reality check - what did the County Council originally say in their Guided Bus Newsletters?
Well here they are in all their glory, take a look:

One PDF document    Two PDF document    Three PDF document

Feb 07 PDF document    April 07 PDF document    June 07 PDF document    Sept 07 PDF document    Nov 07 PDF document    Dec 07 PDF document

Feb 08 PDF document    April 08 PDF document    Aug 08 PDF document

Mar 09PDF document    June 09 PDF document    Dec 09 PDF document

Wikipedia article on the MGB Wikipedia website

CAST.IRON links:
Website CAST.IRON     Press Releases CAST.IRON     Statement of Case PDF document     Info Sheet PDF document