Pennine Motor Services started way back in 1925, as two brothers set up the company. Across the years Pennine has kept within the family, with the third generation continuing on. Originally working from Gargrave in about six or so miles from Skipton, North Yorkshire. The fleet used a distinctive livery of orange and black, using various chassis and bodywork combinations. Eventually settling on the Leyland marque, with again a selection of bodywork. By the 1960's and 1970's the fleet had changed to Plaxton bodied coach chassis, visiting the dales and Lancashire. With routes to Ingelton, Barnoldswick, Settle and Burnley with a quick link to Giggleswick and even visiting Malham. Pennine had been a well respected operator and lasted beyond the deregulation initial few years, changing the fleet to Leyland Nationals during the 1990's. However the Nationals soon found themselves being replaced by step entrance and low floor Dennis Darts, most if not all with Plaxton/Revee Burgess bodywork.
But during April 2014 the family run business announced to the press and locals that after May 2014 Pennine would no longer provide their vehicles for service. Increased competition from Transdev Burnley & Pendle along the 215 Skipton to Burnely diagram, North Yorkshire County Council reduced repayments of the free bus pass journeys to around 20% and the impending expense of the DDA compliance ruling for PCV services. Are amongst the reasons for this hard decision, which was taken after a long time of consideration. So as Pennine sort after a positive outcome for its loyal passengers, Transdev announced they would provide an increased timetable for the Burnley service on the Mainline. But no-one company actually approached Pennine with any interest of its services, NYCC stepped in with a replacement minibus service to Settle as the three times a day service 58. Other routes have been taken by NYCC with a much reduced service, some have a three times a day operation. With this in mind, Pennine continued until their last operating day May 16th 2014. Buses started as normal as the 210, 212, 214, 215, 216 and 580 routes were used during the day, many local enthusiasts had gathered at Skipton bus station as preserved Leyland National LN19 and the Plaxton bodied Leyland Leopard were displayed in the afternoon. Then the final journeys began with the 16:35 Malham departure with D15 a step entrance Dart running, locals and enthusiasts gathered to capture the final Malham journey, a fitting tribute. By 18:00 the final 214 Embsay trip had arrived in Skipton, I along with another enthusiast caught D15 working this one. Then the final Pennine trip to Carleton on the 212 service started at 18:35, with D11 (seen above on Skipton return) working the service. With four journeys left, two to Settle without a return trip and one to Burnley and a trip to Barnoldswick, and history saw another fine company depart the scene. I found the Pennine drivers a credit to the bus industry and very pleasant and happy for there 'offices' being photographed. I had started on Thursday May 15th with visits to Carleton, Settle and Embsay with a stop in Hellifield, finishing at Malham and Gargrave. On the final day I revisited Carleton, Embsay and took in the Horse Close service, with a visit to the depot and Gargrave. The last Malham service again was duly given some time to visit, as locals chatted about the final day, as D15 arrived with a mixtures of scholars and bus enthusiasts who took their shots. Pennine Motor Services 1925-2014 88 years of service.
Here are my personal views on bus activity in my area and beyond