Bus company reveals it will cease trading later this month
Lewis Smith, local democracy reporter
A local bus service based in Bridgend will stop trading this month, putting a number of key bus routes in the area at risk.
Easyway Minibus Hire Ltd has run services in the borough for more than 25 years, however its owners informed Bridgend council that they will no longer be trading after July 31, 2022.
So far no other operators have confirmed if they will be able to take over Easyway’s routes, though Bridgend Council has said it is in early discussions with other public transport operators.
In all, six services will be affected by the closure, including three in the borough of Bridgend, as well as two in Barry and one in Cardiff.
Services affected in Bridgend will be the number 16 between Bridgend and Bettws that runs via Wildmill, the Princess of Wales Hospital, Sarn and Brynmenyn.
Also, the 49 service between Bridgend and Oaklands that runs via Bridgend Life Centre, Broadlands and Hanover Court, and the 81 service between Bridgend and Penyfai via Wildmill, Princess of Wales Hospital, The Pines and Glanrhyd Hospital.
The three other routes affected by the closure of Easyway will be the 32A Cardiff Central to St Fagans Museum, the 88 between Barry and Penarth, and the B3 Barry local service.
Councillor John Spanswick, cabinet member for communities in Bridgend, said the council was currently looking to discuss options for the routes with other providers.
He said: “I’m sorry to hear that Easyway Minibus Ltd have decided to stop trading. Bridgend County Borough Council has worked closely with them over the years, and they have provided the area with local and regional bus services, home to school transport, private hire services and more.
“The council has already contacted other commercial public transport providers about the potential for picking up these routes, and we would be happy to discuss this further with them.”
Resident Lynn Burns, 67, has lived in the borough his whole life and says with so many elderly people reliant on this kind of local service, more needs to be done to protect them in the future.
He said: “It’s sad to see a local company stop trading but hopefully the council can sort out a replacement for people here very quickly. I don’t see why they wouldn’t be able to, and if they don’t it will be the elderly people who use the services that suffer.
“We’ve been fighting for years to get services put back in cut off places like Maesteg Park and Oaklands, so to see more get cancelled elsewhere around the borough is a bit disheartening. We want more added on not taken away but at the moment that’s not happening.
“Whatever happens we need to have a good public transport system right across Bridgend, and if the services aren’t available they will never encourage anyone else to use them. ”
Bridgend council has said that while some of the affected areas will be able to make use of alternative bus services operating nearby, another alternative people may wish to consider using is the Town Rider service operated by Bridgend Community Transport.
Operators at Easyway Minibus Hire Ltd have been approached for comment.
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