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MS takes aim at Arriva decision to axe bus services ‘without consultation’

13 Jan 2024 3 minute read
Llyr Gruffydd MS

An MS has taken aim at Arriva for axing bus services in North Wales without “consultation”.

Llŷr Gruffydd, who represents the region in the Senedd, criticised the bus company after it announced that it will no longer serve a number of locations while reducing the level of service to others.

Mr Gruffydd, of Plaid Cymru, spoke out on the issue on the floor of the Senedd saying he has been contacted by constituents who are “really disappointed that they weren’t engaged as users”.

Arriva will no longer serve the Tweedmill Shopping Outlet in St Asaph or Llandegla via its Services 51 and x51, Rhyl to Wrexham from January 14.

Fears have been raised that the withdrawal of the Tweedmill service raises road safety concerns  and could lead to dangerous consequence.

Residents of Llandegla, in Denbighshire, are concerned that the move will leave villagers cut off and isolated.

Because of the change, passengers will now have to make their way to the next nearest stop on the A525, which is half a mile away from the village centre. Much of the route is unlit and without pavements.

The Llandudno to Prestatyn service will now operate hourly and will no longer call at Llandudno Junction railway station or Llysfaen.

The Bangor to Beaumaris service is being reduced to only operating every 75 minutes as is the Mold to Ellesmere Port service.

Real motive

Llŷr Gruffydd MS said: “I was going to ask you about what the real motive was here, but I think you’ve touched on that, in fairness, Deputy Minister, because I’ve been asked by some of my electors whether—. You know, the change in speed limit probably is a driver for this, but I think there are other drivers for these changes that are playing out in terms of the wider challenges facing the sector. But I think you’ve probably had your say on that.

“So, can I ask you what you would have expected from a company like Arriva when it comes to implementing these changes?

“Because I’ve had constituents contact me who had no idea that these changes were coming and are reading about it in the press and are really disappointed that they weren’t engaged as users, regular users of these services, and that they weren’t given an opportunity through a consultation process to say what they had to say about any proposals that were being prepared. Was there an equality impact assessment?

“I don’t know. If there wasn’t, then there should have been, because obviously it’s such an important part of people being able to access jobs and services, as we’ve heard.

“And there’s a proposed new stop—Llandegla was mentioned yesterday—on the main road, which, I believe, is on private land. The owner has no intention of allowing that land to be used. So, does this not all point to quite a botched job from Arriva when it comes to actually changing services, whatever the motive is?”

Lee Waters MS: Deputy Minister for Climate Change responded that “pleas” could be made to Arriva adding that “unless we’ve got money to give them, direct subsidy, to run routes that we define as socially necessary, they don’t have to take any notice”.


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Ieuan Evans
Ieuan Evans
5 months ago

It is , blatantly obvious that Arriva have taken advantage of the situation for their own financial benefit. It is abhorrent how they have treated these communities.

Llyn
Llyn
5 months ago
Reply to  Ieuan Evans

Yes it appears that Arriva (who are apparently cutting services across the UK) are hiding behind the 20mph speed limit as an excuse. Sadly they know that such is the click bait tendancy these days with Welsh media (including the BBC) that they will/have been sheltered from much scrutiny by a media all to happy to echo their excuse for service cuts.

Gareth
Gareth
5 months ago
Reply to  Ieuan Evans

Prove it.

Ieuan Evans
Ieuan Evans
5 months ago
Reply to  Gareth

So to curtail the Llandegla detour of 1 mile is not taking advantage? Of course it is. The only advantage is to Arriva at the expense of this vital service to the local community. Shame on Arriva.

Jeff
Jeff
5 months ago

Public Transport needs to be run for the people not the profits. That means bringing back under control of LA/Gov and funding from No10 to run it expecting a loss. But make it good enough and people will use cars less, seeing benefits elsewhere.

It is not working at the moment and never will.

Gareth
Gareth
5 months ago
Reply to  Jeff

Why should my money be expected to go into something that is, at the end of the day, a loss?

Jeff
Jeff
5 months ago
Reply to  Gareth

Think about it, when the penny drops, get back to me.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
5 months ago

Llandegla ! Now there was a name to fear it you were a traveler on that road in winter back in the day…

Crosville Motor Company 1906-1990…all downhill since then…

Simon Hughes
Simon Hughes
5 months ago

There is no taking advantage, but, a clear signal that the policy is failing. This should have been a red flag during the instigation of the policy. Any person knows actions have consequences and the larger the action the larger a possible consequence becomes. What this highlights is a failure in planning to take into account the reduction of speed against the delivery of important transport infrastructure. I am only pointing out when you aim to roll out a policy that has an enormous change in driving behaviour you look at all possible consequences and not rely on ‘sniff’ testing,… Read more »

Why vote
Why vote
5 months ago

Wait for the TV series to highlight the incompetence in all the meetings about 20 is plenty in the sennedd, with all the nodding donkeys agreeing with each other all nodding at the same time yes yes yes, what about the busses ‘ they will be ok when it all BEDS IN in and passes the SNIFF test. you can’t write comedy like this.

Richard E
Richard E
5 months ago

As one who travels widely on the buses 🚌 each week – the new service cuts are an excuse and a shame. Many longer did to routes include unofficial stop 🛑 times of 3 to 6 mins en route because the bus is ahead of time !!

The very popular Rhyl to Colwyn Bsy and Llandudno 12 route and Prestatyn to Llandudno Junction and Llandudno 13 route all stop 🛑 at several locations for this purpose,

And both cover large 20 mph areas

Ieuan Evans
Ieuan Evans
5 months ago
Reply to  Richard E

Spot on.

Emma Catherwood
Emma Catherwood
5 months ago

The first of many isolated communities to be cut off.

Communities which cannot afford Tesla electric vehicles, and Communities which are too old to walk everywhere.

Just wait until these poor people are ordered to pay for heat pumps.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
5 months ago

Didn’t we sign a social contract back in the C18 that specifically said if we don’t make a fuss you won’t exterminate us…it never mentioned free bus passes…or minimum standards of delivery. The deputy is one more disappointment to add to list of failed politicians we have had to endure these last fifty odd years…

Nigel Astley
Nigel Astley
4 months ago

It was obvious that the imposition of 20mph would impact on bus services. It’s a bit rich to moan about a lack of consultation now, when Plaid has been complicit in helping Labour foist this on us under the same measure.

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