SEVERAL bus routes across Caerphilly county borough have avoided the axe after a local company agreed to replace a large number of the journeys.
Earlier this year, Stagecoach said Welsh Government ministers’ decisions to cut bus service support by 25 per cent last year, along with reduced bus investment from local authorities, has left the company with no option but to reduce services.
Caerphilly council has been working alongside local company Harris Coaches, who will replace a large number, but not all of these journeys.
But the 538 between Blackwood and Penybryn is to be cut and a reduced service will operate on the C17 between Caerphilly and Bargoed after Saturday, July 19.
John Harris, managing director of local transport company Harris Coaches, said: “We’re pleased to deliver these important services to the residents of Caerphilly county borough and beyond. We recognise the importance of regular public bus services for access to education, employment, health services and essential shopping."
“Significant financial investment and our team of 40 drivers, engineers and administration staff look to the continued support of local customers to help maintain and develop these routes into the future.”
Cllr Tom Williams, Caerphilly council’s cabinet member for highways, transportation and engineering, said: “Concerns were raised following the announcement that a number of bus routes across our county borough would cease operating from July this year, therefore I am delighted that discussions with Mr Harris of local company Harris Coaches have meant that a large number of these routes will be able to continue running for residents."
“For such a large number of our residents, regular bus services running through their communities are a real lifeline, and we look forward to working with Harris Coaches in providing these key replacement services for our residents.”
Details of the bus service changes are below:
7 Blackwood – Ystrad Mynach – Nelson – Treharris – Pontypridd
11 Blackwood – Ystrad Mynach (Tesco) – Cefn Hengoed - Gelligaer
538 Blackwood – Ystrad Mynach (Tesco) – Cefn Hengoed - Gelligaer - Penybryn
C16 Caerphilly – Ystrad Mynach – Gelligaer – Nelson
C17 Caerphilly – Ystrad Mynach – Gelligaer – Bargoed