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Council steps in to help as two crucial bus services are cancelled

21 Jul 2023 2 minute read
A number of bus routes are being cancelled or reduced across Wales.

A Welsh council has arranged for two free to all shuttle vehicles to act as a temporary last-minute solution to the axing by a local transport company of two vital bus services.

A number of bus routes are being cancelled or reduced across Wales due to the uncertainty around the Welsh Government’s continued funding of bus services and the reduction in passenger numbers following the Covid-19 pandemic.

South Wales Transport informed Neath Port Talbot Council that as from Saturday (July 22) it was ceasing Bus Service 202: Neath to Port Talbot and Port Talbot to Neath and Bus Service 204: Neath to Caewathan and Caewathan to Neath.

As a result, the council held a series of discussions with local bus operators and has now organised a free to all shuttle vehicle operated by Forge Travel to replace Bus Service 202 and for another free to all shuttle vehicle operated by Select Coaches to replace Bus Service 204.

These will operate from Monday to Friday only – starting on Monday 24th July to Friday 1st September.

Tears

The Leader of Neath Port Talbot Council, Cllr Steve Hunt, said: “Together with Chief Executive Karen Jones and other council representatives I attended a packed public meeting in Briton Ferry on the evening of Friday, July 14th to find what this would mean to our residents.

“A number of them were in tears as they told us of their fears about not being able to attend hospital appointments, not being able to visit friends, get to work or go shopping – residents, learners and businesses will all be severely disadvantaged.

“We worked hard to come up with the temporary alternatives in a short space of time and we will continue to work with local transport companies in search of a permanent solution.

“I have spoken publicly about the need for more certainty from the Welsh Government about its continued funding of public bus services and will continue to lobby for this while being grateful for the funding for this temporary arrangement from Welsh Government.”


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Linda Jones
Linda Jones
8 months ago

Good move by this council. Public transport services, including bus services are generally dire in Wales. Total underinvestment for decades in such a vital service has consequences. In Cardiff, for instance, the bus service, owned by Cardiff Council, is very expensive, unreliable and finishes early evening. There’s little chance people can leave their cars at home. Disappointing for a capital city, particularly when compared to others in the U.K.

Jan
Jan
8 months ago
Reply to  Linda Jones

It’s a temporary solution issue that wont solve a huge issue for the community, unfortunately…a bus service that is well used and necessary for access to health care,Doctors, Pharmacy and local minor injury unit …beggars belief, when we’re being encouraged to leave our cars at home!
The temporary buses are mini buses,no disabled person in a wheelchair can access,even anyone with mobility issues have major difficulties..I witnessed the driver helping people on and off the bus this week..we’re going backwards not forwards..

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