Villages secure bus routes after two-year battle
- Credit: Pixabay
Seven bus routes will be introduced to North Somerset next month replacing a host of existing routes when their contracts expire.
Six of the latest services will run from Monday-Saturday with two linking Yatton to and from Clevedon after a two-year battle to improve transport links when the X7 service connecting the villages was withdrawn in April 2019.
Route 54 will take passengers to Clevedon, Yatton, Claverham, and Bristol Airport and has been long overdue according to the Yatton Parish Council's chairman.
Cllr Jonathan Edwards said: "With the increased population it is vital that we improve our infrastructures, and public transport is a number one priority for us."
Cllr Steve Bridger, who represents Yatton for North Somerset, has been pushing for better connections between Yatton and Clevedon for almost two years.
He said: "I raised the issue at my first council meeting and asked for an urgent meeting with the executive member for planning and transport.
"In March 2020 we secured a route due to start in September. We all know what happened next - everything was put on hold after the Prime Minister announced the first national lockdown."
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The 54 service will cost £4.50 for an adult return and £2.50 for a single from Yatton to Clevedon. It will also become the 55 route once it reaches Bristol Airport and continues on into Bristol.
Meanwhile, the 53 service will loop Clevedon before becoming the 54 service.
Existing services, such as the A5, linking Winscombe to Bristol Airport, and the 88 route, which serves Nailsea, Portishead and Clevedon, will no longer run as they 'did not best fit the communities'.
Replacing the two will be routes 57, 58, and 59 which will run every two hours from the same vehicle from Portishead to Nailsea.
Weston routes have also been confirmed by operators, First West of England to South Road, Worlebury and Bleadon from April 11. However, the full details of these have not been decided yet.
These will replace North Somerset Connect's B1, C1, C2, and L1 services in the town. Sourcing is also being carried out for routes in Sandford, Walton Bay, Blagdon and Langford though nothing has been finalised.
All other routes will be available from April 1.