Bus revamp on the way


Campaigners calling for bus services across the region to be franchised delivered an open letter signed by 1,500 people to South Gloucestershire Council in December

A REVAMP of bus services in the region will see new ‘on demand’ minibuses introduced.

The ‘WEST link’ minibus service, which would allow people living in areas not served by regular services to use a phone, app or website to hail a bus, will start operating in the summer.

Metro Mayor Dan Norris says the service, funded from the government through the Bus Service Improvement Plan, will not be restricted by a timetable and will run from 7am-7pm Monday to Saturday, with the aim of getting people to “key transport corridors where they can then pick up another bus or train”.

The mayor’s office was unable to confirm reports that some services axed by commercial operator First last year, including the Y2 that linked Downend to Yate, could return as “supported services” with public subsidies in the spring.

A meeting to discuss supported services for the next financial year was being held by the Metro Mayor and West of England council leaders after the Voice went to press.

Meanwhile supporters of a campaign calling for the power to set all timetables to be removed from private operators and handed to Mr Norris and local councils handed over an open letter with more than 1,500 names to South Gloucestershire Council at a meeting held just before Christmas.