Councillors at Ashfield, Mansfield and Newark and Sherwood Councils have spoken of their fury after Trent Barton announced the cancellation of a key bus route.
The 141 bus serves places like Sutton, Carsic, Stanton Hill, Skegby, Kings Mill Hospital, Rainworth, Blidworth and Hucknall before arriving in Nottingham.
It has been described as a ‘lifeline for residents’ and serves some of the areas with the lowest car ownership in Nottinghamshire.
Leader of Ashfield District Council – Councillor Jason Zadrozny has demanded an urgent meeting with the Managing Director of Trent Barton.
He has complained that bus users and local councillors have not been consulted at all. He has described the current bus service as “appalling”, with daily cancellations and buses not turning up. He has demanded an urgent meeting with Trent Barton, other transport bosses. He has asked for an urgent re-think.
Councillor Zadrozny said, “The 141 is a critical service that serves some of our poorest areas. In parts of Blidworth, Carsic, Mansfield, Skegby and Stanton Hill – residents are becoming increasingly isolated due to poor or non-existent bus services.
“This decision is a terrible one and if Trent Barton had bothered to pick up the phone and ask local councillors – we would have told them.
“The service they are providing at the moment is appalling. They blame driver shortages but the reality is that they have a track record of running down services than blaming low passenger numbers on the cancellation of services. They then cherry pick the most profitable routes leaving many passengers high and dry. We hope to persuade Trent Barton to think again.”
Trent Barton are in receipt of publicly funded subsidies.
Whilst they are not legally required to consult with local councillors about the cancellation of services – they are required to consult with Members of Parliament in the areas impacted and Nottinghamshire Council before making any public announcement about cancellation of services.
Councillor Helen-Ann Smith who represents Skegby and Stanton Hill on Nottinghamshire County Council said: “I think this decision will devastate bus users who rely on this service. Many residents use the 141 to use and work at Kings Mill Hospital, to go to our schools and colleges and to go to work in Nottingham.
“Residents in places like Carsic, Skegby and Stanton Hill already have the poorest bus services in the whole County. This is a short-sighted decision that needs re-thinking. Residents in Skegby and Stanton Hill tell me that they’ve stopped using the 141 because it’s so unreliable. They are walking to Kings Mill Hospital and into Sutton to access other bus services. It’s not good enough.”
Councillor Jason Zadrozny and councillors from 3 different authorities have launched an online petition.
It can be viewed and signed here: