Cabinet member calls for rethink to bus timetable changes

Wakefield Council’s Cabinet Member for Planning and Highways is urging Arriva to rethink its timetable changes following growing fears that the district’s communities are being abandoned by the bus company.  

Matthew Morley smiling
Cllr Mathew Morley

Arriva has announced they will run reduced timetables in parts of the district from 26 February. The company claim that this is due to the continuing impact of Covid-19, affecting services and travel. This follows changes to Arriva services last year, due to the impact of a shortage of drivers.

Cllr Matthew Morley said the Council has been meeting with West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA ) to see how they can support Arriva at this time. But has made it clear that Arriva’s actions are essentially ‘putting the brakes’ on the work being done to create an integrated public transport network.

Cllr Morley said: “This is a huge blow for so many of our residents and is on the verge of cutting off community transport links. It is beyond disappointing that these further changes to services are going ahead, as it will have such a negative impact on those who need access to a regular and reliable bus service to get to work, school and college.

He added: “Whilst, I recognise that Arriva, like nearly every other business and services in the public sector, are dealing with the effect of Covid, the answer cannot simply be to cut off community transport links that are a lifeline to so many.”

“We will continue to lobby on behalf of residents, as well as working with the Combined Authority to find some support for Arriva. However, I am urging Arriva to postpone the changes, as it is essential to ensure that in all discussions the voices of residents are heard.”

ENDS

Notes for editors:

 For details of changes see: https://www.arrivabus.co.uk/latest-news/yorkshire-service-changes—feb-2022