Communters voice anger at bus changes

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COMMUTERS have told First bus they are ‘angry and upset’ over changes to the network.

The company parked a bus in Fareham town centre yesterday where staff could speak to the public about timetable and route changes.

It was part of a series of roadshows held across Hampshire to answer questions about the alterations which will come into effect on Sunday, November 18.

Janice Taw, 68, from Stamshaw, was upset about a change which will mean she has to change at Hilsea to get to Fareham.

She said: ‘I am very disappointed. Why don’t they just leave them as they are?’

Jane Humpleby, 46, from Stamshaw, was angry because the changes will mean a ticket for her family to get to Fareham will now rise to £16 because of having to transfer buses.

She said: ‘Whose decision is this? They are all fat cats sitting in offices.

‘Why aren’t they here today?’

And Joan Allison, 68, from Gosport said: ‘If only we had competition, it would be better as they would keep each other on their toes.’

First was also promoting the free wifi which is available on its buses.

Tony Per, 42, from Bridgemary, said: ‘I think it’s rubbish.

‘I signed up and the second time I used it, it wouldn’t recognise me.

‘It’s not the greatest service.’

First is completely redesigning the bus network.

Steve Hobbs, commercial business manager at First, said he welcomed the comments.

He said: ‘That’s why we are here today – to hear from our customers.

‘The idea is to do this early and let people know about the changes so they can adjust.

‘Some of these routes have been in place for 40 years.

‘We are starting again and listening to our passenger’s needs.’

Timetables are available from Portsmouth library, Southsea library, Gosport ferry terminal or First travel shops.

Today First will be in Commercial Road, outside Cascades Shopping Centre, Portsmouth, from 9am until 4pm.

For more information about the changes go to mynewfirstbus.co.uk.

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