Nottinghamshire on-demand bus services to expand across remote villages

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A ‘on-demand’ bus scheme which allows residents to request a ride whenever they need it is being extended to cover more remote Nottinghamshire villages.

It is part of a £5m investment to improve and expand bus services across the county, after Nottinghamshire County Council said its Demand Responsive Travel Service has been a hit with isolated bus users, and plans to introduce four more areas.

People will be to travel anywhere between bus stops or other designated points with each service zone at a convenient time, using an app or phone call to book a seat.The new zones will launch in 2024, and will replace some scheduled services.

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These services will be in: 856/857 Lowdham/Newark – Bottesford; 91 Newark – Bingham; 863 Keyworth – Ruddington; 852 Colston Bassett – Radcliffe on Trent; 853 Hickling – West Bridgford; 528/532/535 Eastwood area; 773/774/775 Netherfield area; 300 Lowdham – Newark and 747 Lowdham – Calverton – Oxton

The new zones will launch in 2024, and will replace some scheduled services.The new zones will launch in 2024, and will replace some scheduled services.
The new zones will launch in 2024, and will replace some scheduled services.

Trials have previously operated in Rushcliffe, Retford, Ollerton and Newark and during evenings in Mansfield. The county council also plans to take over 12 routes with low passenger numbers which aren’t deemed to be commercially viable by their operators, at a cost of £1.4m.

Councillor Neil Clarke (Con), the Cabinet Member for Transport and the Environment, said it would help remote communities stay connected.

“The county council has carried out a bus network review and are pleased to say that we are able to continue supporting bus services in Nottinghamshire,” he said. “We have a pledge that every resident in the county has access to bus services and are working towards fulfilling that.

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“Not only are we supporting existing services, we have Demand Responsive Travel Service – our ‘on demand’ service – which has proved very successful in four areas we’ve already done, and we are going to be introducing it in another four. That will mean people will be able to use the app or call up and ask for a bus to pick them up at a recognised stop. This will serve remote and isolated communities and enable them to connect to main services.”

People will be to travel anywhere between bus stops or other designated points with each service zone at a convenient time, using an app or phone call to book a seat.People will be to travel anywhere between bus stops or other designated points with each service zone at a convenient time, using an app or phone call to book a seat.
People will be to travel anywhere between bus stops or other designated points with each service zone at a convenient time, using an app or phone call to book a seat.

Although people won’t be able to request pick-ups from their house, buses will use existing stops and landmarks like village halls. Cllr Clarke added: “Several of the commercial operators have said they can no longer maintain services because they’re not commercially viable. “We’ve got a bit of government funding and that enables us to support services which they might otherwise have been withdrawn by operators.

“It’s very important that we do the best we can to ensure all residents have access. “If people don’t have a car, they can become very isolated. We want to ensure they all have access.”

The low-use services which will now be supported by the county council are:

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Stagecoach 6 & 7 – Worksop, Gateford, Shireoaks, Rhodesia, Worksop.Marshalls 90 – Newark, Radcliffe, Nottingham.Trentbarton 90 – Sutton, Kirkby, Selston, Ripley.Stagecoach 14/15 – Mansfield, Ollerton, Walesby.Nottingham City Transport 46,47 – Woodborough, Lambley, Mapperley, Nottingham.Stagecoach 1 (Mansfield Miller) – Mansfield Woodhouse, Mansfield.Trentbarton Rushcliffe Villager – Bingham, Newton, East Bridgford, Shelford, Gunthorpe, Radcliffe.Marshalls 37 – Retford, East Markham, Tuxford, Sutton on Trent, Muskham, Newark.Stagecoach 141- Bestwood, Hucknall, Mansfield and Ashfield.