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LAST UPDATED: 24 April 2018

MAN 18.220 A69

22341-48              NK55A--


Seen on Grainger Street operating Service 22 before conversion of the service to double deck operation is 22342, complete with scrolling Sentence Case display and Megarider Mega-rear.

Photo © Stagecoach North East Bus Depot 2008

These eight vehicles were delivered new to Walkergate in December 2005, joining 5 cascaded 54-registered examples from Slatyford to facilitate conversion of Service 22 to easyACCESS. They carry Alexander Dennis ALX300 bodies which are identical to the earlier 2004 MAN/ALX300 combinations (B42F configuration), and were delivered with the Stagecoach corporate blue interior and individual seating, wearing Stagecoach in Newcastle livery. Unlike the earlier deliveries, they entered service with uppercase orange digital destination displays.

Registrations of the batch are as follows:

22341     NK55AHZ
22342     NK55AJO
22343     NK55AJU
22344     NK55AJV
22345     NK55AJX
22346     NK55AJY
22347     NK55AKF
22348     NK55AKG

Their arrival at Walkergate allowed the withdrawal of the last two remaining Leyland Olympians in Newcastle along with six Volvo Olympians.

In spring/summer 2007, the batch had their blinds reprogrammed to display scrolling Sentence Case text and 22341/42 received pants Megarider Mega-rears.  22341/42 lost their Megarider Mega-rears in Spring 2011 and Spring 2009, respectively.

These vehicles retained their original allocations to Walkergate until August 2013, when 22346-48 were transferred to Slatyford in exchange for Enviro400 deckers 19163/93/95. Prior to this, the only movement of the batch had been a three month loan of 22341 to Slatyford from March 2013.

September 2016 saw 22346 return to Walkergate, in exchange for MAN 14.240 A66 39721 which moved to Slatyford.

Late April 2017 saw extensive cuts across the Newcastle network, one effect of which was to reduce the peak vehicle requirement at Walkergate by nine vehicles. As a result, 22345 was left surplus to requirements at Walkergate and transferred to Slatyford. June 2017 saw 22346 also transfer, without replacement, to Slatyford, where it ousted 22071.

Walkergate's 22344 transferred to Slatyford in October 2017, coinciding with the return of 19205 at Walkergate and the departure of the last Pointer 2 bodied Dart, 35195, at Slatyford. In December 2017, 22343 moved to Slatyford, in exchange for Enviro400 19204 which returned 'home' to Walkergate.

In February 2018, 22345 was noted parked up at the rear of Slatyford with panelling removed. It remained out of service for over a month, returning to use in late March 2018, complete with new rear panels.

The batch were reunited in April 2018 as the final two examples at Walkergate, 22341 & 22342, moved to Slatyford in exchange for Kinetic bodied MAN 18.240 A69's 22512/13.

A relatively recent transfer over to Slatyford, 22343 NK55AJU is seen operating Service 10 to West Denton Park.

Photo © Stagecoach North East Bus Depot 2018

These vehicles are currently operated by Newcastle (Slatyford).



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