Appeal for cash to save bus service

A COACH company which operates a threatened village bus service is appealing for help from parish councils to fund the route.

Geoff Amos Coaches, based in Woodford Road, Eydon, runs an hourly service between Daventry, Banbury and Rugby and receives a subsidy from Northamptonshire County Council.

But from tomorrow (Friday), the firm’s subsidy will be slashed from 53p for every £1 spent by someone using a concessionary pass to just 38p.

Brian Ellard, the operations manager of the firm, said the popular Woodford Halse to Banbury journey could see the company make less than £1 per customer.

Mr Ellard said: “To keep the service at it currently stands, we would be looking at around £250 a day and if we can not get this money, then we would make a loss on this service.

“This is going to isolate the disabled and elderly and we don’t want to cancel it.”

Geoff Amos has approached 13 parish councils who’s villages are connected by the route with a view to getting donations.

Chairman of Woodford-cum-Membris Parish Concil, Bernadette Rogers said: “The bus service makes this village desirable for people to live in, the other being the shops that we have.

“We will be discussing this at the April parish council meeting and I think there is a great deal of sympathy towards keeping it running.”

Byfield Parish Council has said 20 villages approached the council to try and help keep the service.

Chairman of the parish council John Cannell said: “We want to look at the best solution and a lot of people will need to come together and try and work it out. It will not be a case though of us waving a magic wand and the problem being solved.”