Maryport residents say axed bus route is damaging the town

Residents and business owners in Maryport have claimed that the knock on effect of losing a bus service is damaging the town.

Stagecoach cancelled the M1 bus route because not enough people were using the service. The route helped people travel around the town.

People are now worried about the impact it is having on the high street.

John George has owned businesses in Maryport for 30 years. He owns a card shop situated next to the former high street bus stop.

But since the M1 bus route was axed, he says footfall has decreased by 20%.

John George, said: “Up until the bus service did cease my staff were telling me that at nine o’clock in the morning there were quite often people waiting to get in.

"People had come down on the bus service. The routine would be to pop into one or two shops, maybe the newsagent next door and maybe pop to one of the local cafes.

"They meet and have a chat and then make their way home on the bus. That has completely changed because they are now using different forms of private transport."

Mayor Lyn Radcliffe says older and more vulnerable people who live in the town's estates have also been affected.

Lyn said: "The great sadness is that those people who used that bus were the people who needed it the most. The needed it the most because not being able to access proper health services or shopping is totally wrong."

The number 30 bus covers some of the same routes as the M1 did but residents argue that it is simply too far away from the town to be convenient.

In a statement Stagecoach said: "The M1 service was operated by us on an entirely commercial basis and owing to a very low number of passengers, the service unfortunately didn’t cover its operating costs. We therefore had to take the difficult decision to withdraw it from our network in June 2022."

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