There’s jubilation as Brylaine restores buses on the recently axed K59 timetable, the Spalding-Boston route that travels through villages.
But the news comes with a warning that only bums on seats – passengers – will save the K59 in the long term.
Brylaine tweeted news of the extended timetable, which comes into force on Tuesday, thanking Lincolnshire County Council (LCC) for funding that made the step possible.
Now Brylaine and district councillor Jane King, who represents three villages served by the K59 – Donington, Quadring and Gosberton – say people must use the bus if they don’t want to lose it.
Coun King says the K59 will be reviewed in a year and people power won’t win the day again if passengers aren’t using the buses.
Brylaine operations director Malc Wheatley said: “There is no doubt that the pressure of local representations and petitions helped to secure this funding by identifying the issues caused by the recent reductions in this service.
“However, petitioners should be aware that the contract is for three years only with annual reviews. We still need to see an increase in patronage (passengers) to secure the future and consistency of the service.
“We would ask that residents along the route would consider perhaps a change of habit by leaving the car at home once a week or more, or using our ever popular family day ticket for just £12.50, covering return trips for two adults and up to three children, or perhaps persuade the teens to take the bus rather than the taxi of Mum and Dad. Of course, concessionary pass holders have unlimited access to services.
“It is a fact, as budgets become further squeezed, small operators like Brylaine will only be able to negotiate support, if needed, for those services they can show are regularly and consistently patronised. As always it is down to the public to use them.”
Anita Ruffle, from LCC, said: “Brylaine initially reduced the frequency of the K59 bus service due to lack of use. However, following a petition signed by over 300 local residents, we have agreed to pay for some additional journeys to plug large gaps in service.
“The arrangement will be provided for a trial period of a year during which time we will review the number of passengers using it. We will then make a decision about whether or not to continue the extended timetable.”
• Pinchbeck, Surfleet, Bicker, Swineshead, and Kirton Holme are also on the route.
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