Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Bus Review & the Windlesham '500'

Wednesday 2nd February

As part of the review of services necessary to budget cuts, the 'Bus Review' consultation ended on January 31st. This particular issue has been the one that has generated the most local interest since my election in 2009 and I received over 120 communications regards a local route that has been put forward in the initial proposals for a reduction in services.

On Mondays to Fridays, consideration is being given to introducing a revised timetable, using one bus. This could involve a service every two hours through Windlesham with the first arrival in Staines being around 10am and the last departure from Staines being around 4.15pm. The first arrival in Camberley would be 8.50 am with the last return trip leaving Camberley at 5.15 pm. Early morning buses from Windlesham to Sunningdale Station will be reviewed to obtain the most beneficial times for those commuting by train from Sunningdale. If the Saturday service on route 500 is continued, it would be similar to the current one.

Final choices of service pattern will be determined only after all responses to the Consultation have been analysed and prior to a competitive tendering exercise to establish the cost to the Council of the various options. A decision will then be required based on the best value relating to route 500 and the overall affordability when equated with the savings requirement of the Bus Review for the whole area. Thus, the published proposals are by no means finalised.

In the meantime, I will ensure that your comments are included in the responses to the Consultation, before the result is considered by the Cabinet Member for Transport and ultimately agreed by our decision-making Cabinet. If changes to services are to be made, it is not expected that they will occur before September 2011.

I should like to thank all of those who put pen to paper to express their concerns and while I have replied to most, rest assured that I shall continue to press that this service is not cut to the detriment of residents.

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