Passenger hits out at Sheffield bus companies for 'favouring money-spinner' routes and 'ignoring pensioners'

A former driver has hit out at Sheffield bus companies for favouring profitable routes over ones with more pensioners.

Monday, 8th January 2018, 8:48 am
Updated Monday, 8th January 2018, 9:40 am
Brian Whitfield has said bus bosses atre favouring routes over ones with more pensioners. Picture: Chris Etchells/The Star

Brian Whitfield, aged 82, of Jaunty Lane, Base Green claims bus bosses don't invest in routes like the number 8 and the 8A service near his home because the majority of people who use them are pensioners with free passes.

He claims bus chiefs are instead favouring routes such as the Stagecoach 120 which runs Halfway to Fulwood - because it carries 'more affluent' customers.

The 82-year-old has even claimed bus bosses are 'removing services from other underprivileged routes to give service 120 more buses' leaving 'hundreds of elderly customers' out in the freezing conditions.

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Mr Whitfield who used to be a bus driver in Sheffield, said: "During December, it was awful - many buses weren't on time and lots of pensioners on Base Green are having to stand in the unnecessary cold for longer than they should.

"The 8/8A which serves Base Green is a vital service and lots of pensioners rely on it so much to get to the shops and travel away from the estate when they need to.

"You can be standing waiting for one at the Crystal Peaks terminus and see so many 120s pull away - it's frustrating. The 120 must be the best served route in all of Sheffield because it has lots of people who pay premium tickets.

"Our route, the 8 or 8A has probably more pensioners than most routes - the bus organisers' favour the 120 and the poorer end of Sheffield just wait, wait and wait.

"It's quite simple - routes and buses with more pensioners and free bus passes don't make companies money."

But a Stagecoach spokesman said they have been 'running exactly the same number' of buses on the route and the same 'journeys per hour' for the last two years.

And First has called the allegations 'false' saying the 8/8A services have 'remained unchanged since 2015'.