Time is running out for residents to have their say on proposed bus route changes which an MP claims will leave passengers with fewer services.
Members of the public have until Sunday, July 31, to put forward their views on the plans by Barnsley Bus Partnership, which have been criticised by Wombwell and Darfield MP Michael Dugher.
The Labour politician hit out at proposals to cancel the 37 bus on Saturdays – which serves Barnsley, Lundwood, Cudworth, Shafton, Grimethorpe, Brierley and Hemsworth.
He also criticised plans scrap the 8 and 8a service – which serves Barnsley, Worsbrough Common, Ward Green, Worsbrough Bridge and Worsbrough Dale – with only a partial replacement.
Mr Dugher said this would have “a major impact on passengers’ daily journeys, meaning it is more difficult to get around.
“Local residents rightly expect punctual and reliable bus services to get about.
It is really important that people have their say on these proposed changes.
“The consultation is open to the public and anyone can make a submission online.”
Mr Dugher has previously campaigned, as shadow transport secretary, for more power to be put in the hands of passengers and for local authorities to be given the power to set routes and fares, so that passengers and residents can get a better deal.
A spokesperson for Barnsley Bus Partnership said the public’s views will help them to optimise key routes into the town centre and provide “a better coordinated, more efficient and integrated bus network that meets the needs of people living in, working in, and visiting the town.
“Feedback will be used to inform bus service changes, which are expected to be implemented in January 2017.
“The proposals form part of the aims drawn in Sheffield City Region’s Devolution Deal to improve public transport in our region.”
Shortly after the launch of the public consultation earlier this year, Paul Lunch, managing director of Stagecoach Yorkshire, said: “The Barnsley Bus Partnership is about working together for the benefit of passengers across the town.
“Working together will help us offer more travel flexibility for passengers, which can only help further grow the number of people using public transport in their local community.”
People can take part in the consultation and find information about the proposals online at travelsouthyorkshire.com/bbp and via paper feedback forms and route maps from customer service desks at interchanges.
Posters are also displayed on all of Barnsley’s Stagecoach buses.
The newly-formed Barnsley Bus Partnership brings together local bus operators including Stagecoach Yorkshire, Arriva, TM Travel, Globe Coaches, Waterson Coaches with Barnsley Council and South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive.