Axed Portsmouth bus routes will come back after city council agrees to subsidise services​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

First Bus
First Bus

THREE Portsmouth bus services that had been dropped will be replaced with cash from an £80,000 council subsidy.

Routes affected by recent First Bus changes, including in Old Portsmouth and Tipner, are set to run in the new year following an agreement made between the company and Portsmouth City Council.

As a result a new number 12 service will link Tipner with Tesco Extra in Fratton Way as well as North End shops and St Mary's Hospital, and a new number 6 bus will run between Old Portsmouth, Southsea and The Hard.

A new 13/14 Sunday service will in part replace the First Bus Sunday service.

READ MORE: Anger as First Bus scraps Old Portsmouth to Southsea bus route

The council's head of transport, Cllr Lynne Stagg, said: 'A lot of work has been going on behind the scenes since the announcement to reduce services was made by First Bus.

'As a result of in-depth discussions with bus operators and residents, I am now pleased to confirm that the council will be supporting three subsidised bus services to run from January 6, 2019.

'We have listened to residents and worked with First Bus to bring back much-needed services. The new subsidised routes will serve residents living in Tipner and Old Portsmouth, and we have brought back a Sunday service for the 13/14 route.'

She added: 'I am planning further work with bus operators to ensure bus services meet the needs of Portsmouth residents.

'We plan to run an event where residents can speak to us about current services as well as running a survey to ask people what routes they would like in the future.'

Marc Reddy, managing director of First Bus in Hampshire confirmed the arrangement. 'We have been working hard with Cllr Stagg to find a solution to reinstating some of the bus services which were changed in September.,' he said.

'Through this partnership approach, dialogue and a competitive tendering process we are delighted to be operating these new shuttle services from January.'

The number 6 bus will run every half hour and the number 12 every hour.  For a proportion of the 13/14 route (from the city centre) there will be a bus every hour, but for some parts it will be a two hourly service.

Through a partnership between Portsmouth City Council, Havant Borough Council and Hayling Ferry, First Bus has also agreed to amend the 15 service route to serve the Hayling Ferry for a trial period.

The £80,000 came from the council's parking reserves.