Bus services in Taunton, Bridgwater and Weston-super-Mare face cutbacks from July. Operator First Bus is removing several routes which it says are 'underperforming'. Up to 12 people face redundancy at the Bridgwater bus depot.
The changes from July 28 are: Taunton route 92 cut; increased frequency on route 22. Bridgwater - Town Services 1, 2, and 3 cut; Weston - routes 1 and 14 cut. The news comes just days after parent company First Group saw its share price fall 30 per cent
More than one 150 angry bus users in Weymouth packed a meeting last night to argue about proposed changes to bus routes in South Dorset.
First Bus plans to stop routes 5, 5A and 4B from March 24. But local residents said the move would leave many elderly and infirm people isolated in their own homes. The bus operator blames tough economic times on the decision.
It also says that the money the company receives from the concessionary fare scheme is less than forty per cent of the actual journey price. Fuel rebate has also been reduced so it's been left with no option unless Dorset County Council steps in to subsidise these routes.
The meeting was called by South Dorset MP Richard Drax who had been contacted by many of his constituents unhappy with the decision to axe routes.
Strikes are underway across Devon and Cornwall by staff working for First bus.
It follows a day of action last month by members of the RMT union. It's over changes to pay and working conditions. The company did come up with a new offer but it was rejected. because it didn't include back pay. Bus services will be affected until midnight tonight.
Drivers with First Bus in Devon and Cornwall are on strike today in a row over pay. The industrial action was called for by the Rail, Maritime and Transport union. They say not all staff are being paid at the same rate and figures released by First about pay increases are misleading.
First Bus has announced it is to stop running bus services in North Devon and close its Barnstaple depot. The company has started a consultation process with trade unions on the possibility of redundancies.