Reading coachway

Reading Coachway is an interesting example of how the UK coachway network is growing organically. Coach services were de-regulated by the 1980 (five years before local buses), since then coach services have developed as the operators wished. A curiosity of the approach has been the development of ‘Reading Coachway’.

A clue is in the official title of the bus stops in question. They are called ‘Calcot, Sainsburys’ because the coachway interchange is in reality a few bus stops in the car park of Calcot Sainsburys supermarket that happened to be close to a good junction on the M4 for Reading with good local transport links.

Here is the ground level view:

Reading Coachway streetview

And here is the overhead view:

Reading coachway aerial view

The list of coach services is impressive, covering England, Wales and Scotland.

M14    Cheltenham (Gloucs) – Victoria (London)
200    Gatwick Airport – Broadmead (Bristol)
201    Gatwick Airport – Swansea
202    Swansea – Heathrow Airport Terminal 4
303    Southsea (Portsmouth) – Birkenhead
310    Bradford City Centre – Poole (Dorset)
403    Victoria (London) – Street (Somerset)
404    Shortroods – Felton (N Somerset)
444    Hereford – Victoria (London)
501    Edinburgh – Victoria (London)
502    Victoria (London) – Ilfracombe
504    Victoria (London) – Penzance
505    Newquay (Cornwall) – Victoria (London)
508    Haverfordwest – Victoria (London)
890    Fishguard – Victoria (London)

There are also a wide range of local services:
1 Reading Town Centre – Newbury (W Berks)
18 Reading Town Centre – Calcot (W Berks)
N26 Reading Town Centre – Theale (W Berks)
26 Reading Town Centre – Calcot (W Berks)
74 Reading Town Centre – West Ilsley
S85 Little Heath (W Berks) – Southcote
S86 Little Heath (W Berks) – Southcote
S87 Little Heath (W Berks) – Southcote
S88 Reading West (Oxford Road) – Theale (W Berks)
S90 Purley on Thames – Theale (W Berks)
S92 Theale (W Berks) – Reading Town Centre
S93 Theale (W Berks) – Castle Hill – Bath Road
S94 Castle Hill – Bath Road – Theale (W Berks)
S96 Tilehurst – Theale (W Berks)
101 Newbury (W Berks) – Reading Town Centre
104 Tilehurst – Newbury (W Berks)
105 Newbury (W Berks) – Reading Town Centre

The store is open from 7am to midnight and according to its website has: Disabled Toilets, Toilets, Baby Change, Parking, Restaurant, a Starbucks coffee shop and a Pharmacy. And yes, there is also a big supemarket!

We are pressing for more interchanges of this sort. Sometimes however, some infrastructure work will be needed to create all the right conditions for such services to develop.


About PeterEastern
Amongst other things I am interested in the overlap between information technology and personal travel and how we can remain mobile whilst also greatly reducing the negative effects of our travel.

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