Concerns over loss of rural bus service

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FEARS have been raised by Nick Clegg for the future of one of Sheffield’s last rural bus services.

The Deputy Prime Minister and Sheffield Hallam MP says he is concerned villagers in Ringinglow could face ‘isolation’ if the number 84 service from the city centre is axed.

Consultation is being launched on Monday by South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive on the proposed city-wide ‘bus partnership’ which includes a review of present routes.

While wider improvements have been promised to punctuality, the plan also proposes that Ringinglow village loses its last remaining bus service.

Currently, the number 84 service runs from Ringinglow twice a day from Monday to Friday. SYPTE have indicated they would be willing to look at alternatives as part of the consultation process.

Mr Clegg said: “While there might not be large numbers of people using the Ringinglow service, I’m concerned that those who do could face isolation if buses are withdrawn.

“As a local MP, I will be making these views clear as part of the consultation process and I hope we can find a positive solution.”

Concerns were shared by Coun Roger Davison, Sheffield Council Lib Dem member for Ecclesall ward.

Coun Davison said: “Any improvement to bus services across Sheffield shouldn’t come at the expense of others on less popular routes where people have no other way of getting about. We should be doing all we can to ensure there are decent regular public transport services for everyone.”

A spokesman for bus company First, which runs the 84 service, said: “There are some exciting partnership plans for the network in Sheffield, in such areas as service delivery and value for money, that will help grow passengers.

“It is important that all interested parties feed back their views as part of this consultation.”