Success for residents campaigning for a better bus service

Residents in Kirkheaton are set to benefit from additional bus services in their area.

Bus passengers in Kirkheaton, Huddersfield are set to benefit from two groups of additional bus services after their services were reduced back earlier this year.

In February, now-defunct operator Yorkshire Tiger withdrew their 262 service between Huddersfield and Brighouse via Kirkheaton and instead opted for parent company Arriva Yorkshire to extend their existing 261 service through to Huddersfield. This resulted in the residents of Kirkheaton being left with only an hourly bus service during the week and 2-hourly on a Sunday; with no alternative service to rely on.

A group of regular passengers on the service launched a campaign to urge Arriva Yorkshire to provide a more frequent service throughout their village. Campaigners state that since the changes, they have had multiple buses miss, not turn up, or being too full to board.

Arriva Yorkshire has now announced that they will be improving the 261 service with buses ‘up to every 30 minutes’.

In a tweet, Arriva Yorkshire posted an image which states ‘From 4th September, our 261 service will be increasing to run up to every 30 minutes between Kirkheaton and Huddersfield.’

The news comes as new operator Team Pennine also announces a new hourly bus service for Kirkheaton which will begin on 5th September. In their Twitter post, Team Pennine wrote ‘Kirkheaton, we’re coming! We’re running a dedicated bus route to Huddersfield from September 5[th]. Smart, new buses with all the latest features. Don’t be blue any longer – thanks to #TeamPennine, your future is pink!’

Residents who have been campaigning are overjoyed that they will finally be getting a decent bus service.

Speaking to Huddersfield Times, Helen Lindsay told us “I have two children who use the bus service daily for getting to school and college. The hourly bus service made it very hard for them to get connecting buses – they had to either get the really early bus or I ended up paying for a taxi for them which made them anxious about being late. With the services changing, this will make it more manageable for the connecting bus and make them less anxious about being late resulting in a more pleasurable morning for me not having to rush them around and worry about them being late.”

Another regular bus user Holly Allen told us “I’m really pleased that the bus services are increasing, I won’t be worried about getting to work and appointments now. Since the reduction in frequency, I’ve had to rely on taxis to get me to where I need to go on time.”

Resident and Huddersfield Times Co-Editor Jonathan Evans has also been part of the campaign. Talking about the success of the changes he said “It’s fantastic that we have now managed to obtain additional services along the route. The service reduction and overall unreliability since February left passengers disadvantaged and isolated – so this will hopefully rectify that. A big thank you needs to go to residents who supported the campaign as well as to the bus operators Team Pennine and Arriva Yorkshire.”

The new timetables for the services are available on operator websites and will be uploaded to Metro’s website soon.

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