Manx Electric Railway to come to rescue again as bus strikes return

Sadly the bus strike on the Isle of Man is returning with a vengeance with the union deciding to call a stoppage from 0001 on Saturday 25 May until 2359 on Wednesday 5 June – during the TT races, traditionally the busiest time on the island. As a result of this strike there have been changes to the transport being offered on the island and once again the Manx Electric Railway will be operating extra services.

The original plan for the Manx Electric Railway was for timetable D to start operation on Saturday 25 May but this has now been changed and timetable F will now be in operation on Saturday 25, Sunday 26, Monday 27, Friday 31 May, Saturday 1, Monday 3, Wednesday 5, Thursday 6 and Friday 7 June. This sees sixteen journeys in each direction starting at 0910 from Douglas, then every half hour until 1640 and then at 1740 (there is also no departure at 1310). All journeys run all the way through to Ramsey with the exception of the first departure which terminates at Laxey. Return journeys leave Ramsey at 1010, 1110, 1140, 1240 and then every half hour until 1810.

A revised service will then operate between Tuesday 28 and Wednesday 30 May which includes early morning and afternoon services provided to help get children to school. Three services depart Douglas at 0710, 0720 and 0810 with balancing departures back from Ramsey at 0840, 0910 and 0940. A mainly half hour service then commences from Douglas at 0940 (no departure at 1310) until 1640 with one final departure at 1740. Trams from Ramsey depart at 1010, 1110, 1140, 1240 and then every half hour until 1510, there is then a departure at 1555 before a half hour service resumes at 1610 until the last tram of the day at 1810.

If you thought these first two timetables were good well you will be spoilt on Sunday 2 and Tuesday 4 June when there will be 23 departures from Douglas starting with a Laxey service at 0910 and concluding at 1740 with a journey to Ramsey. Trams depart Douglas at 0910, 0940, 1000, 1020, 1040, 1055, 1110, 1125, 1140, 1155, 1210, 1225, 1240, 1255, 1310, 1340, 1410, 1440, 1510, 1540, 1610, 1640 and 1740 on both days. In the other direction there are 22 departures from Ramsey starting at 1010 and then at 1110, 1140,  1155 (to Laxey), 1210, 1240, 1255 (to Laxey), 1310, 1340, 1410, 1440, 1510, 1540, 1610, 1625, 1640, 1655, 1710, 1725, 1740, 1755 and 1810. There are also two Laxey-Ramsey services at 1455 and 1525 and a Laxey-Ramsey service at 0955.

Although it is disappointing that the union have decided to disrupt the Isle of Man at their busiest and the most crucial period for many businesses it is pleasing to see that Isle of Man Transport are trying their best to keep people moving with these improved services.

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