Council agrees to fund W3 bus

Campaigners have fought to save the W3 bus
Campaigners have fought to save the W3 bus

A council has agreed to fund a bus service.

Wellingborough Council took the unusual step of agreeing to fund the W3 bus route, which runs between Berrymoor Road and Wellingborough town centre, after an 18-month campaign to keep the service.

Stagecoach announced plans to withdraw the W3 route last year following a cut in funding by Northamptonshire County Council, which sparked a series of complaints and some passengers to hold sit-down protests in front of buses.

The route was taken on by a new firm, Centrebus, which said it would run the W3 for a trial period.

But Centrebus cut services on the route to an off-peak only timetable, from 24 buses a day to 11.

Users of the W3 have campaigned to get a peak-time timetable reinstated. They have met regularly with bus operator Centrebus and Wellingborough Council over the last year.

At a meeting of Wellingborough Council’s recourses committee on Wednesday, September 19, members agreed to provide Northamptonshire County Council with a quarterly grant of £11,935 for the next year to fund the service.

Cllr Paul Bell, leader of the council, said discussions would continue with the county council in order to find a long-term solution.