First Bus scales back A2 route ahead of scrapping it in April

PUBLISHED: 12:00 19 January 2018

First Bus will scrap its A2 service in April. Picture: Mark Atherton

First Bus will scrap its A2 service in April. Picture: Mark Atherton

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A bus service which is a vital route for students will be axed in April, leaving parents concerned for their children’s education.

First Bus has scaled back the A2 service, and will scrap it in April.First Bus has scaled back the A2 service, and will scrap it in April.

First Bus has scaled back its A2 Airport Flyer service, which connects Weston with Bristol Airport, before scrapping it all together in April.

But the service, which has stops in Wrington, Churchill, Winscombe and Banwell, is used by passengers to attend school or college, with no alternative for some passengers leaving a parent concerned for her children’s studies.

Vicky Palmer, whose 16-year-old son attends Weston College and uses the A2 service to commute from Churchill, told the Mercury ‘many students will be unable to get to school or college safely unless alternative provision is sought’.

She said: “My son is of compulsory school age and chose to continue his studies at Weston College where he is very happy and doing well.

“He is able to get there on the A2 fairly easily and safely. There is no alternative service for him.

“First Bus said he could get the A3 from Sandford instead, but this is not true. He would have to walk a long way down a dangerous busy road with no pavement in places in the dark and the bus terminates at Locking Castle.

“I don’t know what we will do with no bus service to get him to college after April.

“Surely if it is compulsory for children to attend college or school until they are 18 the Government needs to ensure there is a suitable bus service particularly for children in rural areas and villages who need to connect with towns and cities?”

MORE: Weston residents unhappy with bus services

A First Bus spokesman said the A2 bus now runs every other hour rather than hourly after a ‘review of customer demand’.

They added: “While the company recognises that this frequency reduction will have an impact on some customers, there are simply too few customers using service A2 to justify an hourly frequency.

“All customers will still be able to make current journeys, however, not necessarily at current times following the frequency reduction. Many customers will be able to use services 126 and A3 as alternatives.

“First Bus is continuing to work with Bristol Airport and North Somerset Council to develop commercially viable bus services in the affected area.”

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