North Somerset Council and First Bus are working together to address the the challenges bus users have and assure them about work undertaken to improve services and reliability in the area. 

New commercial routes have been introduced, forming the largest change in bus services for years in the area, by First Bus.

Some or these changes have been supported by North Somerset Council, and are part of the council’s bus service improvement plan (BSIP), which is funded by the Department for Transport.  

The Council raised issues with First Bus and sought assurances about improvements to the network.

This included repairs to the bus fleet and bringing additional resources and vehicles to North Somerset to maintain reliability for the public.

Mike Bell, Leader of North Somerset Council, said:  

“We are committed to listening to residents in a bid to improve our bus network, making it a service where people are comfortable to leave the car at home. 

“Our teams are monitoring the situation with First Bus closely and we are taking the necessary steps to ensure that services improve, while working to restore the confidence of our communities throughout this period of implementing bus service improvement plans. 

“Passengers need a reliable and regular service. Too many people have had a poor experience in recent weeks with buses cancelled or full to capacity. We cannot ask residents to use the bus but not deliver the services needed to enable that. 

“We will continue to hold First Bus to account and work with them and other operators to find solutions.” 

Doug Claringbold, the Managing Director for First West of England, added: 
“Firstly, I’d like to apologise to customers who have experienced issues with our services recently. The disruption in the Weston-super-Mare area is very much a short-term blip and is being caused by an issue that is affecting the availability of our vehicles.

“Safety is our top priority, and following investigations into several incidents outside of North Somerset - but using similar engines to our fleet - we have had to undertake a series of checks and modifications to our maintenance procedures. This has meant we’ve had to withdraw some buses from service as we undertake these activities, working very closely with the vehicle manufacturers.  

“Clearly, taking buses out of service affects our punctuality and reliability, but I’m pleased to report that we are now getting on top of this short-term issue and the situation is improving. 

“It is unfortunate that this technical problem has coincided with the introduction of our new timetables across North Somerset, and while it is too early to see the results of these changes, we expect that once this short-term issue is resolved, the advanced scheduling software that we've used for the new timetables will build on the punctuality improvements it produced earlier this year." 

However, when issues arise, customers should contact First Bus directly, and inform the council. Visit and go to Complaints about council services | North Somerset Council (