Wednesday 31 December 2014

City of York Proposed Tendered Bus Cuts

Next week, the City of York Council cabinet will be asked to approve cuts to supported bus services in the city, including two services which also serve the East Riding of Yorkshire. Two criteria are used by the City of York to decide when to provide financial support for a bus service, a maximum subsidy of £2 per passenger and a minimum number of 9 per passengers per bus hour operated (there is an option to tighten these criteria to £1.60 per passenger maximum subsidy and 13 bus passengers per bus hour but this would not impact any cross boundary services into the East Riding of Yorkshire).

The Sunday to Thursday evening service on route 10 between Stamford Bridge, Dunnington, York and Poppleton, currently operated by Transdev York, is proposed for withdrawal. This would deliver £36,057 in annual savings as part of a target £200,000 annual saving. The current passengers per bus hour are 7 and the per passenger subsidy is £2.92.

The withdrawn journeys would be the 2023 York-Stamford Bridge, 2100, 2200, 2300 Poppleton-Stamford Bridge, 2353 Nether Poppleton-Upper Poppleton, 2029 York-Poppleton and 2100, 2200 and 2300 Stamford Bridge-Poppleton. If approved the last journey from York Railway Station to Stamford Bridge would be provided commercially by First at 1931 (Mon-Thu)/1925 (Sun) and from Stamford Bridge to York by First at 2015 (Mon-Thu)/2010 (Sun). In fairness this is quite a late finish for the daytime only provision provided by First, compared to some other areas. Dunnington also has a 2305 service from York provided by EYMS on route 45A. Transdev provide the Friday and Saturday evening service ommercially so it is not proposed for withdrawal.

City of York Council also are proposing the entire withdrawal of service 36 between Sutton upon Derwent in the East Riding of Yorkshire, Elvington, Wheldrake and York. Currently 5 journeys from Sutton upon Derwent at 0900, 1015, 1215, 1415 and 1615 are provided on Monday to Saturdays, along with 3 journeys from York at 1105, 1305 and 1505. Associated peak service X36 is not proposed for withdrawal, and passenger numbers on the X36 are described as "reasonable". The current combined 36/X36 service, which also receives a small contribution from East Riding of Yorkshire Council, has a subsidy of £3.46 per passenger and 7.5 passengers per bus hour. The annual saving from withdrawing the 36 would be £40,000. The 36 only started serving Sutton upon Derwent in April.

As a result Sutton upon Derwent and Elvington's only daytime services would be on EYMS operated, East Riding of Yorkshire Council subsidised services 195 and 196. Elvington residents would have 3 buses to York on Tuesday daytimes, and one on Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday daytimes, along with one return service from York on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays (extra journey options are available by travelling into York on the 195 and returning on the X36). Sutton upon Derwent has one less Tuesday service into York compared to Elvington provided by the 195/196, but also has a return service to Pocklington on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Wheldrake is also served by part-subsidised service 18, which hopefully would see a small boost from the 36's withdrawal.

While on the per passenger subsidy measure, the 36 performs very poorly, the service reduction proposed is very severe, and Elvington goes from a two hourly Monday to Saturday daytime service to not even having a daytime service on Mondays and Fridays.

As a final note, City of York Council fund 4 (one-way?) journeys on the 18 between York and Holme Upon Spalding Moor Monday to Thursday, 8 on a Friday and 7 on a Saturday at an annual cost of £26,813, to which both North and East Riding of Yorkshire Council's also contribute. This covers some daytime journeys plus the Friday and Saturday evening service. There are 15.7 passengers per bus hour with a £1.46 subsidy per passenger.

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