Historically Service 147 was operated by the Birmingham and Midland Motor Omnibus Company Limited (BMMO—Midland “Red” Motor Services) between Birmingham, Alvechurch, Redditch and Astwood Bank. The route was one of the oldest run by the company, being first introduced as Service 17 before the First World War.
In modern times, the route number 147 has been revived for services between Worcester, Bromsgrove and Redditch, and later for services between Worcester, Bromsgrove and Halesowen.
Service 147 was originally introduced by Birmingham and Midland Motor Omnibus Company Limited (BMMO—Midland “Red” Motor Services), running between Birmingham, Alvechurch, Redditch and Astwood Bank. By the early 1970s, the route had been cut back to run only between Birmingham and Redditch Town Centre, but this section was reinstated by the time of the “Reddibus” VNP scheme, and in this form the service passed to Midland Red (West) Limited at Redditch depot when the company started trading on Sunday 6th September 1981.
By 1983, Service 147 ran an hourly frequency but was interworked with the Birmingham, Alvechurch, Redditch and Evesham Service 148 to give a 30-minute frequency on the Birmingham to Redditch section of the route. Additional journeys were also provided by Limited Stop Service X6 which ran between Birmingham, Alvechurch, Redditch and Evesham, under the “Midland Express” brand name.
By April 1990, the route for both Service 147 and Service 148 had changed to terminate at Matchborough Centre, running over the same route as Service 57 and Service 58 respectively between Matchborough and Redditch Town Centre. Each service continued to run once an hour in each direction to maintain the 30-minute frequency between Birmingham and Redditch Town Centre. Evening and Sunday journeys were provided by Service 146 which ran over the same route as Limited Stop Service X6 between Evesham and Cotteridge, but called at all stops, then over the Service 147 route into Birmingham City Centre.
On Saturday 18th July 1992, Service 147 and Service 148 were withdrawn and replaced by additional extended journeys on Service 146, that ran hourly between Birmingham, Alvechurch, Redditch and Evesham, with short-working journeys between Birmingham and Reddtich to give a 30-minute frequency on that section of the route.
1 Exact dates unknown.
|April||1990||Birmingham ↔ Alvechurch ↔ Redditch ↔ Matchborough|
Midland Red West Limited won a contract to transport student nurses from Alexandra Hospital, Redditch, to Worcester University in the mornings with a return journey in the afternoon. This contract was operated by Worcester depot and rather than run a vehicle out-of-service between sites, the company introduced a new Service 147, starting on Saturday 22nd February 1997.
Service 147 ran one journey in each direction each day on Monday to Friday, with no service at the weekends or on public holidays. For the morning journey, the service ran along the same route as Service 144 between Crowngate Bus Station and Bromsgrove Bus Station, then the same route as Service 143 between Bromsgrove Bus Station and Redditch Bus Station. From Redditch Bus Station, the vehicle would run out-of-service to Alexandra Hospital to operate the above contract service back to Worcester via Inkberrow.
The afternoon journey would run in reverse of the morning journey, but this always followed Service C10 Leigh Sinton school contract so was worked with Mercedes-Benz 811D Optare StarRider fleet number 807 (registration number E807MOU) which had been acquired specifically to run the C10 contract.
When First Midland Red lost the Alexandra Hospital contract to Astons Coaches there was no longer a necessity to move a Worcester depot vehicle between Worcester and Redditch, and Service 147 was withdrawn (by Saturday 14th February 1998[Exact Date Needed]).
In 1998, route number 147 was again reused for a short-lived service between Birmingham, Rednal and Bromsgrove, operated under contract from Worcestershire County Council. This version of Service 147 had been withdrawn by Sunday 5th September 1999.
|New October||1998||Birmingham ↔ Rednal ↔ Bromsgrove||Withdrawn Jun 1999|
New Service 147 was introduced by First Midland Red Buses Limited on Monday 1st September 2014, running once an hour, Monday to Saturday, replacing a number of Service 144A journeys. The new service ran over the same route as Service 144A between Worcester and Bromsgrove, and then ran via Sidemoor, Catshill, Wildmoor and Romsley, to Halesowen. This service partly replaced Central Buses Service 007 which was withdrawn.
The Service 147 route changed on Monday 7th September 2015 to run via Madeley Road between Sandly Lane and Farley Lane, thus avoiding the difficult turn accross Sandly Lane between Top Road and Money Lane. The route in Halesowen also changed at this time to run via Manor Way, Hagley Road and Highfield Lane, following requests by passengers, with Mucklow Hill no longer being served.
Service 147 was withdrawn on Sunday 10th April 2016 as part of a series of general cuts. The Worcester to Catshill section of the route was replaced by additional journeys on Service 144A, and the Catshill to Halesowen section of the route was replaced by a new service operated by Worcestershire County Council, still using the route number 147. As a gesture of goodwill, First Midland Red donated Optare Solo fleet number 53043 (registration number VU03YJV) to the Council to operate their service.
|New September||2014||Worcester ↔ Bromsgrove ↔ Romsley ↔ Halesowen|
|September||2015||Worcester ↔ Bromsgrove ↔ Romsley ↔ Halesowen||Withdrawn Apr 2016|