Bus firms angry over new stop

Whittlesey's new bus stop which is not being used by Stagecoach EMN-150414-132701009
Whittlesey's new bus stop which is not being used by Stagecoach EMN-150414-132701009
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Stagecoach will not use a new bus stop in Whittlesey which was developed as part of a £500,000 scheme.

Stagecoach and Judd’s Coaches have criticised Cambridgeshire County Council for forcing through the scheme which sees the bus stop in Market Place moved to nearby Grosvenor Road.

Judd’s Coaches says it is being forced to use the new stop against its will on its Coates to Peterborough service which runs every half-hour.

Stagecoach, which used to stop in Market Place, runs a service every half-hour from Whittlesey to Peterborough.

Work on the Grosvenor Road stop was completed last Friday. Work on Market Place, which will allow for more outdoor dining, is scheduled to continue until tomorrow.

The works began on Monday, January 19 but have frustrated the town’s traders as spaces at Eastgate Car Park could not be accessed, meaning fewer people were going to the shops.

Andy Campbell, managing director of Stagecoach East, said he had warned the council about his concerns. He added: “We will not be using the stop. It adds another two to five minutes to the route so either we need a new service or it makes us unreliable.”

Mark Judd, company director of Judd’s Coaches, said: “We are being forced to used the stop. I said I would not use it but the council told me they are taking away the bays from Queen Street where we pick up from.

“Whittlesey people do not want this.”

A council spokesman said: “This scheme was about the pedestrianisation of the Market Place to make it more accessible and allow it to be used for other uses that would benefit business in the town centre.

“To make it safer for pedestrians we have provided an alternative bus stop 150 metres away.

“Now the new stop is completed we have asked Stagecoach to amend its timetable.”