First Bus makes changes to timetables in Portsmouth area after complaints

Bus routes are to be changed from July 27
Bus routes are to be changed from July 27
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A BUS company has made sweeping changes to its timetables after complaints by customers.

First Bus has amended 16 of its routes across our area which had been changed previously at the start of the year.

As reported by The News, in January, First Bus made major changes to routes across the south which some residents said had left them ‘stranded’ in their homes.

In the new timetables, due to come into force on July 27, major changes will affect services across Gosport, Fareham, Portsmouth and Havant.

The main changes include the creation of the number 9a service in Gosport which will serve Nimrod Drive, Grange Road and Rowner Road every half an hour.

A timetable change on the number 11 service will mean that pupils of St Vincent College will now be able to get to school on time.

Fareham also sees some amendments to its routes with the town being included in the new X5 route between Southampton and Gosport.

There will also be eight buses an hour running between Fareham and Portsmouth instead of the current five with the number of buses travelling via the Queen Alexandra Hospital doubling and one arriving every 10 minutes.

MP for Gosport, Caroline Dinenage, said she was pleased with these changes but said more still needed to be done.

‘It’s a step in the right direction,’ she said.

‘However, we will keep nagging until we can restore as much as we can.’

These amendments by First Bus have left many people wondering why the company changed the original routes in the first place.

Councillor Alan Scard, of Anglesey ward in Gosport, said: ‘It would have been nice if they had talked to everybody beforehand.’

This opinion has been echoed by commuters using the service.

Sylvia Bereford, 75, from Albemarle Avenue in Gosport, said: ‘I have become really frustrated with the company.

‘I definitely think they should consult the public as we are the ones that keep them going.’

In a statement First Bus said it had received feedback from passengers and had set up a customer panel in Fareham. The firm said that the creation of the new 9a service in Gosport was an example of this.