- West Midlands bus route 11
11A / 11C
Route 11C seen in Acocks Green Village
Overview Operator National Express West Midlands Vehicle Wright Eclipse Gemini Predecessors AM PM Travel, Falcon Travel, Serverse Travel Route Start Acocks Green Garage Via A4040 End Acocks Green Garage Length 27 miles (43 km)
The Birmingham Outer Circle is a roughly circular, 27 mile (43 km) bus route in Birmingham, England (a small section crosses into Sandwell). It mainly follows the city's outer ring road, the A4040 with some small deviations to serve some rail stations and shopping areas. Buses on the Outer Circle are numbered 11C on the clockwise journey and 11A on the anticlockwise journey. Buses are numbered 11E for journeys terminating at Acocks Green or City Hospital.
The main operator on the route is National Express West Midlands. Following bus deregulation in 1986 several companies have competed on sections of this route. Falcon Travel, Serverse Travel and AM PM Travel have traversed the entire route.
The number 11 is Europe's longest urban bus route and first came into existence as two routes in 1923: the no.10 ran from King's Heath to the King's Head (Hagley Road) via Cotteridge, and the no.11 from Six ways Erdington to Acocks Green and Moseley. The route was first operated as a complete circuit on 26 April 1926, the idea being to better link the suburbs of Birmingham, as most routes at that time travelled in and out of the city 
The route is traversed annually by a cavalcade of vintage buses. Run by the Aston Manor Transport Museum, the event began in 1977 and has continued each year since with the exception of 2000, in which it was cancelled due to a national fuel shortage.
AM PM Travel began operating on the service in October 2009, increasing the frequency of their route in December. Six re-furbished Volvo Olympian buses have been entered onto the new service fitted with Wi-Fi technology.
A full circuit takes 2–3hrs to complete, depending on traffic conditions, and the service carries 50,000 passengers each day. There are 266 bus stops on the route. The route serves 233 schools, colleges or universities, 69 leisure and community facilities, 40 pubs, 19 retail centres, 6 hospitals, and one prison. It also links some 15 commercial centres, and passes Cadbury's in Bournville, one of the world's largest chocolate factories.
The outer circle is the traditional route for the BRMB Walkathon, a sponsored walk which raises funds for charity.
On weekdays service 11A runs every 7–10 minutes and the 11C every 3–9 minutes, with lower frequencies in the evenings and at weekends. The Wright Eclipse Geminis used on route 11A/C/E have green 'Every 8 minutes' branding.
(Clockwise from the A34, in the North of the city.)
- Perry Barr
- Witton (for Aston Villa)
- Ward End
- Swan Shopping Centre at South Yardley, where the route crosses the A45 road from Birmingham to the National Exhibition Centre and Birmingham Airport
- Acocks Green (Passing Acocks Green Bus Garage)
- Hall Green (for Sarehole Mill)
- Billesley (Outskirts)
- Kings Heath
- Bournville (for Cadbury World)
- Selly Oak (for University of Birmingham and Selly Oak Hospital)
- Bearwood (in Sandwell)
- Winson Green (for Winson Green Prison and Winson Green Outer Circle stop on the Midland Metro)
In popular culture
The Birmingham band Woodbine's eponymous 1999 album features the track "Outer Circle", a tribute to the bus route. In 2001 a group of musicians from Birmingham created a concert based on the route.
In October 2009 Kevin Beresford, a 57-year old resident of Birmingham, created a calendar dedicated to the anti-clockwise portion of the route.
- ^ a b c D.Harvey, M. Hanson and P. Drake Outer Circle - Birmingham's No.11 Bus Route". Tempus, 2003
- ^ Bus Rally Calendar - Showbus - BUSES rally calendar 2009
- ^ Transport rally axed due to fuel crisis - Birmingham Evening Mail | Highbeam.com
- ^ a b Outer Circle bus showcase - Centro - Case studies
- ^ AMPM scraps Solihull, targets Tamworth :: Bus & Coach Magazine
- ^ a b Birmingham man creates calendar of number 11 bus route - Birmingham Mail
- ^ Free travel for BRMB Walkathon participants National Express West Midlands, 6 May 2011
- ^ Bus route hits musical note - Birmingham Evening Mail | Highbeam research
- ^ Bounds, Jon; et al (2008). "11-11-11". http://elevenbus.co.uk/. Retrieved 2009-08-12.
- 11-11-11 An art project encouraging people to spend 11 hours on the bus on 11/11
- 11A on FixMyTransport
- 11C on FixMyTransport
Bus routes in the West Midlands Birmingham and Solihull Coventry Sandwell & Dudley Walsall Wolverhampton
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