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22 Feb 2016
Stagecoach Merseyside and South Lancashire has announced a number of updates to its services covering Chorley and the wider area following the funding cuts to council subsidised bus routes.
Stagecoach, which currently runs the 109A service in the daytime, has now committed to independently operate additional Monday to Saturday evening services from April 3rd. These services were formerly funded by Lancashire County Council.
The changes will see the 109A service updated to restore the bus links from Astley Village to Tesco and Southport Road, as well as passing the stops at Booths on Union Street.
The route will remain unchanged between Preston and Buckshaw Village, but will then operate from Euxton Lane via Chorley Hospital, back to Astley Village, Chorley Tesco grounds, Southport Road and then Chorley Interchange.
The company has also improved bus links for passengers travelling across town by joining the existing service 7 Chorley to Croston, and service 8 Chorley to Lower Adlington.
From April 3rd a new service 7 Croston - Chorley - Lower Adlington will operate allowing customers to travel across Chorley without changing vehicles. The new route also aims to improve punctuality and restores direct links to Asda and Market Street, increasing direct links to Booths (Union Street) and Devonshire Road.
While the majority of bus services in Lancashire are provided commercially by bus operators like Stagecoach, a number of supported routes, particularly those operating in rural areas or on evenings and weekends that previously received financial support in order to run, are being pulled or changed, due to lack of public funding.
Elisabeth Tasker, managing director of Stagecoach Merseyside and South Lancashire, said: “Local communities are starting to feel the impact of the squeeze on public sector services, and subsidised bus services in Lancashire have really been in the firing line, with significant cuts to funding. This has unfortunately meant that a number of routes across Lancashire will be altered or will no longer be operational.
“We have listened to customer comments on the 109 and 109A and have altered our routes accordingly to ensure that local communities are provided with the service that they need. We are also stepping into the breach to provide the evening service which we believe is crucial for people travelling in this area.
“We have tried to minimise the effects of funding cuts on our passengers and local community as much as possible but the lack of funding means that unfortunately some previously funded services will no longer operate. As a result, we have needed to make some changes to ensure we can continue to provide our passengers with a comprehensive and reliable bus network.”
Services which Stagecoach previously covered that the company will no longer be operating due to the Lancashire County Council funding cuts include the 6 service from Chorley to Coppull, the 24A service from Chorley to Blackburn, and the 114 and 115 service from Chorley to Preston.
Bus services 8A, 125 will remain unchanged with service X8 Chorley - Lake District launching March 19th.
All route changes will come into effect from April 3rd. For more information on the updated routes and timetables, customers can visit our timetables page or Chorley Interchange.