Transport chiefs blame severe road works for bus network chaos

The Sheffield Bus Partnership notice which has appered on many routes in the last week.
The Sheffield Bus Partnership notice which has appered on many routes in the last week.
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Transport chiefs have blamed severe road works as a reason why Sheffield’s bus network has descended into chaos.

Signs installed on Sheffield buses thank passengers for their patience after cuts to services came into force on November 1 - leaving passengers confused and causing major delays.

But they also say: “The few last weeks have been particularly difficult, especially given the number and severity of the road works and the resulting traffic congestion.”

However, Sheffield Council said there is no extra work happening in the city and have asked the operators to make ‘urgent’ improvements.

Nearly 13,000 people signed a petition to reverse the sweeping changes. After a massive public outcry, operators laid on an extra 30 double-deckers to replace single-tiered buses.

Bus chiefs insist they are ‘listening’ carefully to customers and that new timetables will be implemented in early 2016 to tackle the issue of ‘bus bunching’.

Residents have previously complained that up to three buses can turn up at the same time although all are full - so they must wait until much later to get on board.

The Sheffield Bus Partnership signs appeared on many routes across Sheffield in the last few weeks.

It read: “We want to thank all our customers for bearing with us during the Sheffield bus network changes.

“We always knew that such a big change would be a challenge, but the last weeks have been particularly difficult, especially given the number and severity of the road works and the resulting traffic congestion.

“We’re working really hard to improve things, doing our best to make sure our services are both reliable and on time.

“We’ve got some more double decker buses for our busiest routes, and we’ll be running additional journey’s during peak travel times.”

The Star contacted the Sheffield Bus Partnership, which includes transport operators and the council, to ask which road works were affecting bus routes.

They didn’t respond, but Sheffield Council provided a comment.

A council spokesman said: “There were several factors leading to complaints from passengers about the changes to the bus network.

“We do not believe that there were any more road works across the city than usual.

“We have asked the bus operators to investigate all complaints and make urgent improvements.”