04:58PM, Thursday 02 June 2016
The decision to cut a vital bus service connecting Windsor and Maidenhead has been met with a backlash.
From Sunday, June 12, the number six service run by Courtney Buses will stop, following a cut in funding from the Royal Borough.
The bus, which runs from Frascati Way in Maidenhead to Windsor High Street in a handful of stops, and includes one at St Mark’s Hospital, has been cut because it is ‘no longer commercially viable’.
Pensioner Carol Bowd Roffey, from Castle Hill, Maidenhead, who relies on the service to go to hospital appointments, said: “It’s an excellent service. They say it’s not attended but when I travel after 9.30am it’s always full.
“This is so typical of our council. They always have to be told to think about the elderly or think about mothers with children. They forget that some people live on the margins.
“It’s £12 either way for a taxi to Windsor from Maidenhead. Pensioners cannot afford this; not everyone has a car.”
Just last week, cabinet approved the decision to spend £44,000 on extra funding to Courtney Buses so the evening, Sunday and riverside services could remain.
Residents will now have to use the 16 and 16A services to Windsor, which take longer.
The Advertiser understands there was no consultation among residents or Bray Parish Council.
Cllr Hari Sharma (Con, Furze Platt), the council’s bus champion, said the decision is a ‘win-win for everyone’ and the council could not ‘waste taxpayers’ money on empty buses’.
He said: “We had a substantial local transport fund from central government, for a temporary two-year service and this stopped on March 31.
“We looked at all the data and it’s not commercially viable to continue the service.
“I can’t spend taxpayers’ money on empty buses, it would be a waste.
“This way, no one is missing out and it will be more efficient. There will be slightly more stops now but it’s a win-win for everyone.
“For people wanting to go to the hospital, I would advise them to use People to Places."
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