Local Labour Councillors have angrily demanded that Stagecoach cancel plans to stop the 52 bus route running to Walkley and Hillsborough.
From September, the service will end in Crookes, before returning to the city centre. This will leave thousands of local people with only First’s 52a service on this route, halving service frequency and completely removing services between Crookes, Walkley and Hillsborough later in the day.
The Councillors have written to Stagecoach, asking that they keep the 52 running to Walkley and Crookes and work to promote the service.
Ben Curran, Labour Councillor for Walkley, said:
“Many people in Walkley depend on this service to do their shopping or attend appointments in either Hillsborough, Crookes and the city centre. The proposed changes will make it more difficult for local people to carry out these vital activities and could lead to more elderly people being cut off and isolated.”
“The 52 services have already had reductions imposed by bus companies in recent years. For many residents, this is the only bus that runs near their home. We have written to Stagecoach demanding they drop this outrageous plan.”
George Lindars-Hammond, Labour Councillor for Hillsborough, said:
“Residents of Hillsborough are already frustrated by delays to the existing bus services and removing an entire service from serving Hillsborough will make things worse. Fares have shot up in recent years and if Stagecoach are concerned about passenger numbers they ought to look at the cost of fares instead of slashing key services like this.”
“The impact on Hillsborough is increased as we not only lose the 52 service but also TM travel’s 61/62 service is also proposed to cease running through to town. We’re fortunate to have the tram but this must not be at the expense of all other transport links.”
Jack Scott, Cabinet Member for Transport and Development, said:
“This is a bad decision. Good public transport is key for our economy and for our local communities. The Council spends millions of pounds improving our roads and transport infrastructure. Bus providers need to play their part in ensuring that there is an efficient and comprehensive service for communities across the city. I am asking Stagecoach for an urgent meeting to discuss this.”
“Thousands of people live in lower Walkley and Hillsborough and will be negatively affected if this bus service does not serve them from September. Local Councillors will continue to fight to retain and improve local services in the area.