It’s not just the bus companies to blame

city centre buses
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When the bus changes came in, the Shiregreen service 47/48 became numbers 75 and 76.

In the middle of that week I was on a 76 returning home, and the bus pulled in at its new stop near the Crucible theatre, where there was a lady talking to what appeared to be an inspector.

The inspector called out to our driver, “are you going to Ecclesfield?”

So he clearly didn’t know where our bus was going, though it clearly said Shiregreen on the front.

The driver said he wasn’t and the lady called out to him asking if he knew which bus went past Ecclesfield Library?

The driver replied that he didn’t know, but he suggested that she might try the 75/76 route.

A week earlier he might have been right, but on this day he was actually driving a 76, so it was clearly not the bus he had just suggested.

I suspect his mindset was on how it had been, and at that moment he just reverted to what he would normally have said.

If the drivers and inspectors didn’t know the routes, how were people supposed to find out what buses were what and where they went from?

In fairness, you can’t expect all the bus drivers to know the details of routes that they don’t normally drive on, let alone know them when they have all just changed.

The biggest problem since the changeover has been people getting onto buses and having to ask for service and route information, and also details of the various tickets they could now get.

It seems to have slowed everything down, naturally.

The problem has been that the information people needed to plan their journeys hadn’t been available until the last minute, and you can’t blame the drivers for that.

The biggest problem, as far as I am concerned, is that despite the changes, the old problems of buses not turning up on time, arriving in a convoy or buses not turning up at all haven’t been addressed.

People will adapt to the new timetables, but you can’t adapt to services that run late or don’t turn up.

One final point, none of this would be necessary if this Government wasn’t slashing subsidies to public transport, so don’t blame the bus companies alone.

SC

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