Following confirmation that the 159 service between Coalville and Hinckley, Councillor Ozzy O’Shea, Leicestershire County Council cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “The stark reality of the financial situation facing councils is that we’re not able to step in and subsidise all commercial services, which like this service often require subsidies in excess of £160,000 a year.
“Unfortunately patronage on this service wasn’t sufficient to make it financially viable for the operator. Most villages on the route will have access to other buses services but from February, we will be taking action to support residents who are not close to an alternative service and putting a flexible, bookable, demand responsive transport service in place to make sure people can make important journeys.
“We’ve worked with our MPs to set out the tough choices ahead and how losing out on Government cash to bolster our bus network has hampered efforts to support the industry. This has secured a meeting with the Chancellor in the New Year where we’ll be raising the importance of a better, more sustainable funding deal from Government for buses and other vital services.”
Please note that this is a commercial decision taken by the operator, Roberts. We subsidise the service by £162,260 a year – which equates to £532 a day. The level of subsidy has increased significantly during this year.
We are planning to bring in a flexible transport service for people who live more than 800m away from an alternative bus service, including
- Stapleton and Woodland Nursery to Barwell - three return journeys per week.
- Cadeby to Market Bosworth - two return journeys per week.
- Junction of A447 and B582 to Ibstock - one return journey per week.
- Hugglescote to Coalville - two return journeys per week.
More details on these services will be provided in the coming weeks.