Council steps in to keep East Halton and North Killingholme connectedThe background to this is that Stagecoach and North East Lincolnshire Council and Stagecoach have secured Department for Transport funding to increase the daytime frequency of service 5 between Grimsby and Immingham from half hourly to every 15 minutes, although according to the above North Lincolnshire Council (NLC) press release it will be every 20 minutes. At the same time half hourly extensions will serve the new Able UK development at Killingholme, the CATCH training facility and Phillips 66 Oil Refinery - linking people to jobs and education.
18 November 2016
From 31 December 2016, the 150 bus service from East Halton to Immingham will no longer run. North Lincolnshire Council has stepped in to keep East Halton and North Killingholme residents connected.
Stagecoach East Midlands – the operator of the 150 bus – has decided to stop the service and to extend the frequency of their number 5 bus between Immingham and Grimsby, via South Killingholme. From January 2017, the number 5 bus will run every 20 minutes.
Residents in East Halton and North Killingholme can use the new CallConnect flexible bus service to get out and about whenever they want. They can hop on the purple CallConnect bus to go shopping in Barton or Immingham, visit friends in other villages, or to connect to the number 5 bus to get to Grimsby.
The CallConnect bus has no set route or timetable and residents can register with the service and then book a journey for anytime between 7am and 7pm, Monday to Friday and from 8am to 6pm on Saturdays.
You can register with CallConnect online now. Once registered, you can book your journeys between an hour and a week in advance, online or through the booking centre on 0345 2638139.
Cllr Neil Poole, cabinet member for Environment at North Lincolnshire Council, said:
“We know that buses can be a lifeline in rural communities and we do not want residents in East Halton or North Killingholme to feel isolated after the cancellation of the 150 service. We are stepping in and encouraging residents to sign up to use the CallConnect bus service.
“The advantage of CallConnect over a conventional bus service is that you can choose where you want to go and book your journey at a time that suits you. CallConnect has proved to be very popular in North Lincolnshire with over 1,700 already registered to use the service. It gives people the freedom and independence to get out and about whenever they want.”
CallConnect is available in North Lincolnshire across Ferry ward; Brigg, Caistor and Ridge ward; East Butterwick; Barton, Burton upon Stather and Winterton; and, the Isle of Axholme.
As I noted at the time, Able UK and Philips 66 would not easily be served by the same half hourly extension as that to CATCH, which left the question of what would happen to the South Killingholme extensions to service 5, and to the associated 150 and 450. Service 450 has had amendments registered with VOSA, so must be staying in some form or another, and I assume from NLC's press release that South Killingholme will continue to be served, although surely as an extension of Grimsby to Immingham services rather than as an 'en-route' destination as implied by NLC? Service 150 clearly hasn't survived the changes however. Overall the changes look set to benefit more people than are disadvantaged, but that won't mean much to service 150's users.
However I don't see how NLC can accurately claim to be "stepping in to keep ... residents connected". Callconnect is not new, it started earlier this year. All NLC are doing is promoting an existing service - and oddly not mentioning that East Halton's other daytime bus service, a Thursday only diversion to service 260 that provides a link to Barton. Surely an ideal time to promote this?