New 99 bus route helping maintain service provision.
Following changes in the bus network in Telford and Wrekin, the council has launched a new service to minimise the impact of reduced services.
The 99 timetables will be in operation from Monday, September 4 at 6.25am from Telford bus station with the new routes covering Admaston, Dothill, Hadley, Ketley Bank, Malinslee, Overdale, Telford Town Centre and Wellington.
Although the council is not legally allowed to run a public bus service, it can step in and subsidise routes that commercial operators are unable to cover. Six new services have been operating since January, carrying nearly 10,000 passenger trips in June - over 25% of total patronage across the bus network.
Councillor Lee Carter, (Lab) cabinet member for place (the economy & neighbourhood services) said: “Telford and Wrekin is predicted the fastest population growth in the West Midlands and buses provide a lifeline allowing access to hospitals, work and education.
“Our communities cannot afford to lose services altogether which is why we have stepped in to provide some cover for the loss of provision. We know it’s not enough for some but with budgets limited, this is the best solution available.
“Although welcomed, the recent government funding has been well below required levels with £650,938 awarded in the second round supporting 45% of the network. This leaves a significant hole in our budget for the future.
“We received none from the first round of £3bn and we’re finding it increasingly difficult to continue to subsidise routes our communities depend on - we made a £1.4m investment this year but how long that can continue for is in serious question.”
The council continues to lobby government for greater control and funding similar to other local transport authorities which received funding for 100% of their network.
Services affected include the 11, 11A, 13, 14, 14A, 15, 16, 18 and 19 which will finish on Sunday September 3 according to Arriva’s last timetabled departure and the evening services on the 1, 2, 3A, 4, and 7 will be reduced.
Fares on the council’s buses are capped at a maximum of £2 per single journey for adults (£1 for U19s). The £2 capped fare is also currently available on Arriva services until October 31 through government funding.
To buy travel passes, visit https://mytrip.today/
Concessions still apply to all the council services and other costs for tickets include;
•Day tickets at adults £4, children (under19) £2,
•Weekly tickets for seven days cost £15 adults/£7.50 child
•Season tickets (28 days) £50 adult/£27.50
•Annual costs £500 adult and £275 for under 19s
For full details of the councils seven new services, visit the website.