Sheffield Connect bus stolen and damaged week after launch of free service

Sheffield City Council
South Yorkshire Police have now launched in investigation to find those responsible. Credit: Sheffield City Council

A free city centre bus was stolen and then returned "significantly" damaged just a week after the new service was launched.

The Sheffield Connect electric bus was taken in the early hours of Monday 15 April.

South Pennine Buses, which operates the shuttle service, confirmed two buses had been broken into with "at least one" stolen. Other buses and property were also targeted and vandalised in the incident.

Debris from the bus was later found discarded following an apparent crash in the Killamarsh area.

The service, which is set to run every seven to eight minutes, aims to reduce carbon emissions in the city.

The new free bus service began on 8 April with four vehicles serving the city seven days a week.

Running every seven to eight minutes, the electric bus, aimed to reduce carbon emissions in the city.

Cllr Ben Miskell, chair of the council's transport committee, said at the time of the launch: “This is an important and exciting moment in the history of Sheffield, not only are we introducing the city’s first zero emissions buses to our streets, but a service that is completely free for people to use."

Police have launched an investigation.

A South Yorkshire Police spokesperson said: "It is reported that a Sheffield Connect bus was taken during the night from the Sheffield Interchange, but then later returned in the early hours of the morning.

"It is also reported that the bus has been significantly damaged."

South Pennine Buses director Kevin Carr said that the incident had been "very upsetting" but it was working "incredibly hard" to minimise any disruption.

A spokesperson for South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority said: "This incident has unfortunately had a knock-on effect on some Sheffield Connect services. Customers will be kept updated on Sheffield Connect timetable frequency through Travel South Yorkshire website and social media channels."

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