RESEARCHERS declared Sheffield the city with the country’s worst bus services - but carried out their survey on the day traffic was held up by the Olympic Torch.
Software developers behind new app UK Bus Checker - a mobile phone tool that lets people check bus times on the move - published research revealing the ‘shocking extent’ of the city’s bus delays.
After monitoring 5,637 bus arrivals at 200 bus stops in the city, they said 57 per cent of Sheffield’s buses arrived late.
They claimed the figures showed Sheffield to have the worst bus service in the country.
But the Bus Checker researchers collected their data across the country on Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning last week - while the Olympic Torch relay was moving through Sheffield.
David Young, director of customer experience at South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive, said: “This survey gives a very false view of the actual situation in Sheffield, as the data sample was conducted on the two days the Olympic Torch passed through.
“Indeed part of the sample was taken between 4pm and 5pm on Monday, June 25, at the very time the torch was making its way into the centre of the city.
“This clearly had a major impact on bus operation. In normal conditions bus punctuality, as defined as within five minutes of timetable, is above 90 per cent.”
Carl Partridge of Fat Attitude Ltd, the company behind Bus Checker, said: “It’s entirely possible there may have been some impact of the torch relay on bus times and we look forward to seeing if Sheffield improves its ranking should we conduct similar research again in future.”