Bus route review could see some services axed

BUS service contracts for routes in Witney, Woodstock and Chipping Norton are being reviewed and some could face the chop.

Oxfordshire County Council has launched a two-month long consultation on 30 services where contracts with companies end in May 2014. It is part of a regular review.

Four services are being put forward as the most likely contenders for withdrawal, including the X9 between Chipping Norton, Charlbury and Witney, on a Friday and Saturday evening; the 113 bus between Burford and Carterton; the 233 service between Chipping Norton, Kingham, Fifield, Milton, Shipton, Burford and Witney; and the C1 and T1 services serving Charlbury, Finstock and Leafield.

Witney East councillor Duncan Enright said he was concerned what impact any changes would have on Witney town centre and also its nighttime economy.

And he explained:“At the moment there are a lot of people who are relying more heavily on public transport as they have to make savings and get rid of their cars. It might also make it much harder for people in villages to get into Witney and shops could suffer.”

County Council spokesman Sam Henry said: “Reviews of subsidised bus services take place in each part of Oxfordshire once every six years.

“This periodic review of subsidised bus services has taken place since bus services were deregulated in the 1980s.

“In other words, these reviews are not set up to make savings, but to review current contract arrangements and assess whether those services covered by these contracts need amending.

“By this process some bus services are created, some are discontinued and others are altered, based on the passenger numbers using services and the budget available.

“The subsidised bus service review in West Oxfordshire is no different to what is described above. It would have been taking place at this point in time regardless of the financial climate.”

UNDER SCRUTINY

Services that are being examined

  • 11 between Witney and Oxford.
  • 18 between Bampton and Oxford.
  • 19 between Witney and Carterton.
  •  64 between Carterton and Swindon.
  • 213 between Witney town centre, Farmers Close, Madley Park, Cogges Estate.
  • 214 between Witney town centre, Cogges Estate, Madley Park, Farmers Close.
  • 215 between Witney town centre, Apley Way, Springfield Oval.
  • 233 between Milton-under-Wychwood and Witney.
  •  242 between Witney, Long Hanborough, Bladon and Woodstock.
  • X15 between Witney, Southmoor and Abingdon.
  •  14, 20, 21, 23 and 24 – the Villager Community Bus route: villages to Witney.
  •  223/224/224A between Yarnton, Wootton, Woodstock, Begbroke and Kidlington.
  •  203/220/242 between Kidlington, Shipton-on-Cherwell, Tackley, Woodstock, Bladon and Glympton.
  •  23A between Steeple Aston, Tews and Chipping Norton.
  •  243 between Combe, Leafield, Witney.
  • 811 between Salford, Chipping Norton, Wychwoods, Idbury, Cheltenham.
  • X8 Kingham Railbus.
  •  X8A between Kingham Station and Ascott-under-Wychwood.
  • 98 between Didcot, Great Western Park and Spine Road.
  • To respond to the consultation by November 15 write to Bus Services Team, Highways and Transport, Environment and Economy, Speedwell House, Speedwell Street, Oxon, OX1 1NE, call 01865 815587, or email tim.darch@oxfordshire.gov.uk

Comments (4)

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3:09pm Wed 25 Sep 13

Oxon Chap says...

I hope all the Bus Services that we are paying for out of our Council Taxes are scrapped. That will save £millions. Then the council can tie them in with the massively profitable City services forcing Stagecoach and Go-Ahead to take the Cream with the Sour Milk. Or even better we say goodbye to the above companies and run the services ourselves, saving all of the subsidies, and we will make the sort of obscene profits the bus companies make for the tax payer.All we need is a competent council to take over the service.
I hope all the Bus Services that we are paying for out of our Council Taxes are scrapped. That will save £millions. Then the council can tie them in with the massively profitable City services forcing Stagecoach and Go-Ahead to take the Cream with the Sour Milk. Or even better we say goodbye to the above companies and run the services ourselves, saving all of the subsidies, and we will make the sort of obscene profits the bus companies make for the tax payer.All we need is a competent council to take over the service. Oxon Chap
  • Score: -148

7:25pm Wed 25 Sep 13

West Oxon Webwatcher says...

Oxon chap has no understanding of the law on bus services provision. The council has no such power to requeire bus companies to do as he suggests and bus companies no obligation to do as suggested and therefore they will not and do not co-operate on such matters.
Oxon chap has no understanding of the law on bus services provision. The council has no such power to requeire bus companies to do as he suggests and bus companies no obligation to do as suggested and therefore they will not and do not co-operate on such matters. West Oxon Webwatcher
  • Score: 6

7:26pm Wed 25 Sep 13

West Oxon Webwatcher says...

Oxon chap has no understanding of the law on bus services provision. The council has no such power to require bus companies to do as he suggests and bus companies no obligation to do as suggested and therefore they will not and do not co-operate on such matters.
Oxon chap has no understanding of the law on bus services provision. The council has no such power to require bus companies to do as he suggests and bus companies no obligation to do as suggested and therefore they will not and do not co-operate on such matters. West Oxon Webwatcher
  • Score: 4

10:34pm Fri 27 Sep 13

the wizard says...

The 64 route would have more popularity if it were run from Witney. It is a useful service and opens time saving possibilities which are most welcome, over other options especially when wanting to catch a west bound train or to shop in Swindon which is a far better experience than Oxford.
The 64 route would have more popularity if it were run from Witney. It is a useful service and opens time saving possibilities which are most welcome, over other options especially when wanting to catch a west bound train or to shop in Swindon which is a far better experience than Oxford. the wizard
  • Score: 2

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