It has always interested me why there are, and in many cases always have been, missing interurban links in the bus network.

For example, Stamford to Corby requires a trip via Peterborough or Uppingham. The Potteries to Wrexham is a rail journey via Crewe. Cannock to Telford is a rail journey via Birmingham or bus via Wolverhampton. All require a long and expensive trip, which would discourage any but the bravest.

All three journeys cross county boundaries, and counties are often reluctant to promote cross-boundary services as they often find it difficult to coordinate with neighbouring authorities.

But go back into the mists of time and why did Crosville, which ran in both Wrexham and the Potteries, not provide that link when it seemed to serve every sheep farm in north Wales? Between Telford and Cannock, Midland Red, which again ran in both towns, only ever provided the twice-daily X97, part of a route between Shrewsbury and Leicester.

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