Bus users welcome extended services

The launch of the W3 bus route for the Kingsway estate at Berrymoor shops in Wellingborough, with bus campaigners and representatives from Centrebus, Wellingborough Council and Northamptonshire County Council.
The launch of the W3 bus route for the Kingsway estate at Berrymoor shops in Wellingborough, with bus campaigners and representatives from Centrebus, Wellingborough Council and Northamptonshire County Council.
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Campaigners celebrated the start of a new extended town bus service after an 18-month campaign.

Wellingborough Council agreed to fund the W3 bus route, which runs between Berrymoor Road and Wellingborough town centre, after funding cuts led to a reduced service.

Stagecoach withdrew the W3 last year following a cut in funding by Northamptonshire County Council. The route was taken on by Centrebus, which cut services on the route to an off-peak only timetable, from 24 buses a day to 11.

Bus users campaigned to get a peak-time timetable reinstated and the council agreed last month to provide the county council with a quarterly grant of £11,935 for the next year to fund the service for a trial period.

The new timetable will see four extra journeys each day in the morning, starting at 6.45am, and four extra afternoon journeys, running until 6.15pm.

Cllr Paul Bell, leader of Wellingborough Council, said: “The Kingsway residents have fought long and hard to have the peak-time journeys reinstated on the W3 bus route. It has been more than a year since the campaigners first brought their concerns to my door and during that time they have always represented their community and its needs incredibly well. If residents want these bus journeys to remain on the timetable for this year and in the future, they have to make it a commercially viable service. In short, now is the time to use it or lose it.”

Campaigner Carol Atter, of Windsor Road, said: “Hopefully it will mean a lot to people to have the extended service. I would like to thank everyone who has been involved in the campaign.”

Yolanda Sharp, 41, of St Andrews Crescent, said: “Having the extra buses will be much better for the area.”