Councillors lead calls for better bus service

CARRBROOK’S Suzanne Jackson became the first person to sign a petition calling for ‘Better Buses for Greater Manchester’.

The 27-year-old technician, who works for Ashton Primary Care, described local bus services as “not great”.

Suzanne, who uses buses from Carrbrook to Ashton, said they are not as regular as she would like and the service can be a “shocker” when there are roadworks.

Councillors from three wards in Stalybridge and Mossley joined forces to co-ordinate the petition which is part of a county-wide initiative by the Labour Party in Greater Manchester.

And they were joined in Stalybridge by Labour councillors from Longdendale and Hyde who were offering their support.

The Correspondent has in recent times reported issues with bus services, especially in Carrbrook and Hey Farm.

In their letter to Transport for Greater Manchester, councillors cite “unsatisfactory” services – 237, 340, 343, 348, 350, 353, 354 and 389.

It read: “We write in relation to the poor bus services provided by First Manchester across Mossley and Stalybridge.

“There is, in fact, a concern with all bus services serving the area which we would draw to your attention.

“We have had residents from these wards raise their concerns with us, most of which are being impacted by this in their day-to-day life.

“Constituents have informed us that buses are frequently late, some do not turn up and on other occasions two turn up at once.

“Evening services have been cut with Sunday services in Carrbrook completely withdrawn.

“Residents have confirmed their children are late for school, they are late for work and others cannot get to appointments on time, including being late for hospital appointments and carry out simple tasks such as shopping.

“Further, First Buses do not have the capacity to take on all passengers, particularly concerning when they have turned away passengers with babies and young children in pushchairs.”

The latter added that councillors raised the matter in 2017 when it was accepted level of service was “unsatisfactory” and improvements would be made to timetable changes in 2018 to improve services.

They pointed out there has been little change and services remain “poor” and there has been an increased number of complaints across Mossley and Stalybridge in recent months.

Councillors are calling for a public meeting with Transport for Greater Manchester to discuss “how services could be improved to provide an acceptable and satisfactory level of service”.

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