ANZIO Digital On The Buses

by Patricia Montgomery, LincsMag Writer.
Date: 14 June 2010

On The Buses - Lincolnshire Magazine -

Following a visit (June 2010) by Lincolnshire County Councillor Marianne Overton and local Parish Councillor Len Bannister to deliver a petition on behalf of residents, Stagecoach East Midlands has amended the temporary arrangements for bus services from Dunston into Lincoln during the bridge closure works.

From Monday 14 June 2010 Service 31 from Sleaford to Lincoln will call into Dunston village at 1033hrs to provide residents with a journey into Lincoln. The 1250hrs departure from the City Bus Station will provide a return journey to Dunston if it is requested by a passenger boarding at any point between Lincoln and the village.

"The road closure means that it is not possible to maintain the usual bus service through Dunston and arrangements are in place for customers to use the Call Connect bus throughout the day to shuttle up to the main road to meet Service 31,Ē said Dave Skepper, Commercial Director for Stagecoach East Midlands.

"Dunstonís local councillors have raised concerns that some older customers are having difficulty with the alternative arrangements and would prefer at least one bus a day to Lincoln in both directions to enable them to reach the shops and Post Office.

"We have reviewed the current arrangements through our partnership with Lincolnshire County Council and we are pleased that we have managed to meet the residentsí request."

Councillor Mrs Marianne Overton said, "This is a great example of local knowledge and support helping a commercial company to improve the service. We met with Dave Skepper, took maps with measured distances and explained the case. We asked for a short diversion at the most popular time at least, so that people can continue to use the bus daily to get to services they need.

"There is no shop in the village and people like the bus. This daily service leaving Dunston at 10.33am for two hours in Lincoln should be just right. Stagecoach clearly have the good sense to listen to their customers and I hope people will find the service most useful."

"We have also worked successfully to get the school bus service returned. Once the experts had been out and measured it on the ground, they realised what was easily possible. The County Council service, Call Connect is also working and includes people who cannot use the buses."

Marianne Overton is also still working on improving disabled access with another resident from Nocton, Karen Watchus.

Third Project

The third project is to try and get the bus half hourly service extended to include more villages along the A607.

Marianne has had two meetings with stagecoach to try and restore the service, written and got replies from the LCC Portfolio-holder and presented a petition on Friday to Stagecoach about the cuts on the other side of the Heath.

For the Cliff Villages with a 30K subsidy, in essence they have bought a half-hourly early service to Lincoln for workers and an hourly service leaving at 20 to the hour at other times, to both Lincoln and Grantham, finishing with 11.15pm out of Lincoln.

Stagecoach have agreed to review the timeliness of the bus on the timetable to try and include Welbourn at least, as it is only 2 minutes short.

Marianne Overton pointed out, "The buses have not been well used in the middle of the day at this end. Being at the end of a line will always be risky if traffic congestion increases in Lincoln. We need to put up a considerable fight so they know it matters and we need to use the buses or lose them."

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