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23 Feb 2015
Monday 23rd February 2015 - Stagecoach South West has announced that the reintroduction of the Hop12 to Torquay Town Centre on Monday February 9th 2015 has had a positive impact on local trading. Major roadworks in Fleet Street started on 5th January 2015, resulting in the bus operator having to divert its services away from the town centre. The timing of the bus route diversions caused concern among many local business owners, who experienced the loss of passing trade in what should be a busy time of year with the January sales. Traders throughout the town centre had seen a significant reduction in their customer numbers and had been eager to re-establish a more direct bus link.
Following meetings between Stagecoach Southwest, Torbay Council and town centre traders, the decision was made to re-introduce the Hop12 as this service carries the highest number of passengers to the town centre and has a frequency of up to every 10 minutes in both directions. Stagecoach South West’s Managing Director Michael Watson, said: “We are delighted that the return of the Hop12 has bought shoppers back to Torquay Town Centre and will be doing everything we can to reintroduce a normal service to all Stagecoach South West bus routes serving Torquay as soon as possible.”
David Rowe, a huge supporter of public transport in Torquay and Director of Gordon Rowe Jewellers and Pandora Torquay, said: “During a meeting with traders, councillors and Stagecoach South West, we made it absolutely clear the damage done and the disadvantages of taking away buses from the high street, particularly to the elderly. The impact to retailing was immense. I’m glad to see the positive impact the return of the Hop12 has had on trading and hope that normal bus services will return to Torquay Town Centre as soon as possible.”
The road works are the latest phase of work undertaken by Torbay Council in Fleet Street and are designed to provide more space for pedestrians and improve facilities for those waiting to catch buses.