First Buses have, virtually without notice, removed the last two remaining evening services from Dorchester to Axminster. There will now be no more buses after 7.15pm.
This not only prevents people who work in London, Dorchester and Weymouth from getting back to Bridport and to the villages such as Martinstown, but the lack of evening transport has the effect of stifling business for pubs and restaurants in both the villages and the towns. It could affect the Dorchester economy too.
We overturned the decision in the case of the 47 and this bus is just as important to workers. First’s changes are unacceptable.
We need to do something about this so I’m taking this up as a matter of urgency at Dorset County Council (DCC). There appears to be no reason why the service could not be re-advertised and opened to other bidders.
So, I’ve set up the petition below. Once we have 50 signatures, I will be able to take this to the next Environment Overview Committee at DCC. In any case, I’m hoping that the cabinet member for transport will take action in respect of this appalling failure by First to deliver to their contract.
We the undersigned ask Dorset County Council to recognise the strategic importance of the late service on the X31 bus link between Bridport, Dorchester and Weymouth to students, families and to workers in our local economy as well as its role as the only public transport connection to the the wider train network and call on them to commit to continuing to subsidise this important strategic route beyond April 2014 should a viable commercial alternative not be commissioned.