Pirate FM News

Keep up to date with the latest news delivered direct to your Inbox.

Bus Cuts Loom in Cornwall

Greyhound bus
Delicious Submit this page to reddit

7:01am 19th September 2013

Getting the bus may be about to get more difficult in Cornwall.

Pirate FM has learnt Western Greyhound services in Penzance and Hayle are at risk.

We have seen a notice to staff warning jobs could have to go.

First is thought to be considering the future of some services in Falmouth.

Bosses say they are hammering out details with the council.

In a letter to staff Western Greyhound MD Mark Howarth wrote: "Most of you will have read in the press that Cornwall Council's budget is under significant pressure. We have been notified that due to budget cuts, the council will be withdrawing financial suppport for a number of services, some of which are operated by Western Greyhound.

"It is with regret that I therefore advise you that Western Greyhound will no longer be operating any services in the Penzance and Hayle areas (other than the summer 547), or the 530 and 56 routes, or some lightly loaded 'tendered' journeys on some other routes.

“This will therefore mean a reduction in the number of buses in the fleet and a reduction in the number of roles. This decision by Cornwall Council in no way reflects the quality of services provided.

"Western Greyhound is not the only bus operator having contracts reduced and services of other operators are also affected.

“A formal consultation period will begin shortly for all staff affected and we are currently working on the implications of this decision from the council to withdraw financial support for services. This will be a worrying time for you but please be assured that as a company we will do everything we can to limit the impact of such a decision on employees.

"We have a strong core of commercial services and we will be actively developing these routes over the coming months.

"As further information becomes available, I assure you I will be in touch to keep you updated on developments."

Bert Biscoe, who is in charge of transport at Cornwall Council said: "We share the concerns which have been expressed by Mr Howarth over the future of bus services in Cornwall as a result of cuts in Government funding.

"The Council has already been forced to make savings of £170m over the past four years as a result of these cuts and is now facing having to make further savings of £196m by 2019.  We are also facing increasing pressure on the concessionary fares budget which we are legally required to support.  While we are doing our best to protect essential frontline services, it is impossible to make this level of savings without affecting some services.  

"Maintaining good public transport links is very important in a rural area like Cornwall and we have been working with all the bus operators to look at how best to protect bus services from the impact of further cuts in Government funding.

"90% of the bus network in Cornwall is provided by First and Western Greyhound.  Over the past two months we have held detailed discussions with both companies to identify how savings could be made.  

"One of the proposals which was put forward by Western Greyhound at the beginning of this process was to withdraw all their services from the Penwith area. We recognise the impact this would have on local communities and have been endeavouring to work with the company to identify alternative options.  Ultimately, however, this is a commercial decision for the bus operator. 

"If Western Greyhound does go ahead with its proposal, we will be working with other operators to deliver the best possible level of services within the available funding."

Meanwhile, Falmouth councillor Candy Atherton says she has been told First is planning to withdraw some services in the town. She said: "Older people and those without a car will struggle and we will end up with more cars parked on our already congested roads as people are forced to get a car. 

"This will trap people in their homes. This is bad news for Falmouth and I call on First to reconsider before the services are withdrawn."

7:01am 19th September 2013

Share This Story

Delicious Submit this page to reddit
Suggested articles
homeless

Campaign to cut homelessness in Cornwall

Almost 4,000 people homeless in south west last year

flooding

UPDATE: Cornwall on flood watch as storm looms

Alerts issued for Tuesday have been stood down

Most read
mermaid

PHOTOS: Storms leave sand up to windows of Cornish pub

Bosses call it the worst they have seen

redruth traffic lights

PHOTOS: Council responds to traffic light 'bedlum'

Why a busy Cornish road wound up with six sets

Top articles

Pirate FM Cornwall News Update - 7th January 2016

Cornwall Video News: Officials say they’re holding talks to find new jobs for hundreds of workers in Bodmin.

Ed Sheeran is engaged to girlfriend Cherry Seaborn

National News: Singer Ed Sheeran has announced he is engaged to girlfriend Cherry Seaborn.

UPDATE: Body found on popular Cornish beach

Cornwall News: Police say death at Watergate Bay 'isn't suspicious'

Ed Sheeran is engaged to girlfriend Cherry Seaborn

Showbiz News: Singer Ed Sheeran has announced he is engaged to girlfriend Cherry Seaborn.

Winter Olympics 2018: North Korea will send 22 athletes to South Korea for five events

World News: North Korea will send 22 athletes to next month's Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang where they will join South Korean teammates as they march together at the opening ceremony, organisers say.

North Korea to send 22 athletes to Winter Olympic Games

Sports News: North Korea are to send 22 athletes to next month's Winter Olympic Games in the South Korean city of Pyeongchang.

Could there be a second Hollywood sign?

Strange News: How do you solve a problem like traffic congestion around the Hollywood sign? You build another one.

Newer article

Angler Rescued After Being Washed Off Rocks

Cornwall News: Man fought to stay afloat for fifteen minutes after freak wave in Newquay

Older article

Cornish Schoolboy Found Dead

Cornwall News: 15 year old Richard Lander pupil discovered in Scorrier

Pirate Extra Pirate 70s Escape LoveCornwall