DEEPINGS commuters will be left with fewer travel choices after Stagecoach announced it is cutting its hourly Deeping to Peterborough service.
Lincolnshire County Council’s proposal to slash £1million from its bus budgets has prompted the announcement from Stagecoach that the 22 service between Deeping and Peterborough will be stopped in the coming months.
The service runs hourly between 6.10am and 8.10pm from Monday to Friday, but travellers in the Deepings will only have routes offered by Delaine Buses once the Stagecoach service ends.
Although with vehicles every 30 minutes, Delaine runs more regular buses between Morton and Peterborough, through the Deepings, than Stagecoach, the loss of a regular service between the two locations is a setback for the area.
Market Deeping town councillor Maureen Tray thinks that the news will come as a blow to pensioners and commuters alike.
She said: “It’s disappointing for the Deepings as these bus services are vital for many people living in a rural area such as this.
“We at the council have been aware that something like this might happen, but we’ve been told to keep an eye on the Stagecoach website for more information about when the service will end.
“I know that we still have the Delaine services coming through the Deepings but this certainly won’t make it any easier for workers travelling between here and Peterborough.
“I have fears over the impact that cuts to bus services in Lincolnshire will have on the Deepings.”
Lincolnshire County Council is looking to make £57million in savings in 2011/12 and £125million over the next four years.
The council has said that this will lead to the cutting of 900 posts.
The authority had originally planned £1.5million in bus cutbacks but it has since received an extra £500,000 from the coalition.
Although details of all the routes which will be affected have not been made clear to operators, it is thought that council-funded routes including rural, hospital, evening and weekend services remain under threat.
Andy Campbell, managing director of Stagecoach Peterborough and Cambridgeshire, said: “We will be withdrawing the Deepings to Peterborough service altogether.
“The reduction in concessionary fare grants from the county council has forced this.
“This has always been a marginal service for us and the reduction in the amount we are getting for pensioner passes will no longer cover the cost of actually running the service.”