Depot Transfers, Closures & Reopening due to WMPTE exchange of services

Depot operations Transferred to the WMPTE

On 3rd December 1973, as part of the sale of BMMO services wholly within the West Midland area to WMPTE, full control of six BMMO depots along with all depot staff and vehicles transferred to WMPTE.

BMMO travel centres at Dudley bus station and Sutton Coldfield also transferred to WMPTE on this date.

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Depot operations Partly Transferred to WMPTE

In addition to the above six depots which transferred in their entirety, two BMMO depots transferred certain operations but remained under the control of BMMO.

Bearwood depot

Birmingham (Digbeth) depot

* Note, The WMPTE depot at Moseley Road had been closed since April 1972, but was re-opened by the West Midlands PTE for the purpose of operating ex-BMMO services that had previously been operated at Digbeth depot.

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Depots re-opened by BMMO

Two BMMO depots that had closed in 1971 are reopen.

In 1973, with the pending transfer of six depots to the West Midlands PTE and closure Bearwood depot, BMMO needed additional capacity to meet the requirements of their existing cross-boundary services within the West Midlands area, plus the sixteen additional cross-boundary services the company would be acquiring from WMPTE in the Wolverhampton area. Following service cuts over the whole system and an attempt to improve economies BMMO had closed four depots in 1971, so to meet the forthcoming requirements it was decided to reopen two of these depots. Wolverhampton depot would reopen to operate the ex-Wolverhampton Corporation services acquired from WMPTE, and provide additional capacity for existing cross-boundary services to the north into Staffordshire, and Bromsgrove depot would reopen to provide additional capacity for existing cross-boundary services to the south into Worcestershire.

Unfortunately, Wolverhampton depot had been leased out since 1972, and the new tenant was not willing to move out so BMMO needed to find an alternative site at short notice. Cradley Heath depot reopened in its place but its location 8 miles south of Wolverhampton meant it was far from ideal, so this was only a temporary arraignment until a more suitable site could be found. Following the takeover of Harper Brothers (Heath Hayes) Limited in September 1974, Midland Red also needed to find new accommodation to replace the shabby garage acquired at Hednesford Road, Heath Hayes, and a new site was eventually found at Delta Way, Cannock. The new Cannock depot opened in February 1977, replacing Cradley Heath depot and Heath Hayes depot, which both permanently closed.

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