Weston-super-Mare residents furious with poor bus services
PUBLISHED: 17:30 08 November 2017
Weston-super-Mare and Worle residents have expressed their anger at First Bus after they were left stranded for hours on end.
Eileen Andrews, aged 86, told the Mercury she has faced waits of more than an hour for a number five bus to Weston General Hospital from Worle.
She added: “I live on the top of a hill and I will have to leave my house sometimes two hours before my appointment to make sure I arrive on time. It has been a very poor service recently.
“I had an appointment at 11.40am once and walked down to get the 10.13am bus but that did not turn up.
“The next bus was not due until 10.43am and that one did not arrive either. By the time I got to the hospital it was time for my appointment.”
Another woman, who wished to remain anonymous, said the delays were ‘unacceptable’ in Weston.
She added: “The services in my area at the moment are diabolical. You can be waiting more than an hour for a bus which is meant to arrive every 15 minutes.
“It has been an ongoing problem for two or three months now, it has meant I have been late to hospital appointments and picking my grandchildren up from school.”
A spokesman for First West of England said high levels of traffic have caused issues, but pledged action to drive improvements.
They said: “We are committed to providing a bus service which our passengers can rely on, but unfortunately accidents and general traffic congestion can have an impact on the routes we operate around Weston.
“In recent times, we have seen unprecedented levels of traffic on roads such as the M5 which has a knock-on effect. We do apologise for the inconvenience these incidents may have caused.
“However, we have been striving to make improvements. More resources have been introduced into the timetables to ensure that if we do encounter issues our schedules are robust enough to offer the level of service our passengers expect.
“Year-on-year more people in Weston are using our services, which is causing our network to continue to grow and develop.
“As we’ve seen more growth and forecasting more, we are looking to reinforce our team of drivers.”
The company is holding a recruitment day to fill more than 20 driving vacancies. It will take place at First’s Weston office, in High Street, at 9am on Saturday.