Changes to bus services confirmed
Changes to the bus service network in County Durham are set to come into force.
The changes will come into effect from Sunday 24 July after we intervened to secure a number of services and journeys.
These have been agreed through a combination of negotiated contracts with Go North East and tendered contracts, which have been won by Go North East and other operators.
Where another operator has won the contract, fares will be in line with those charged by Go North East, including the increase in some fares that will apply from 24 July. Almost all fares will remain below the level that applied from 2019 until summer 2021.
Go North East's day, weekly and Flexi-5 tickets will be accepted until September. It is hoped that an agreement will be reached with Go North East to continue to accept these tickets from September onwards.
Cllr Elizabeth Scott, our Cabinet member for economy and partnerships, said: "We understand that a sustainable travel network is vital for County Durham and the wider North East. It allows residents to access employment, education and other essential services daily.
"Cabinet has already agreed that savings from the reduced use of concessionary bus passes can be used to enable more services to be rescued, with funding from the council.
"We continue to work with transport providers to offer the best services possible. While we appreciate that change is often unsettling, we have done our utmost to ensure that alternative provision is in place for our residents wherever possible."
What changes are being made
Some key changes coming into effect due to funding from us are:
- Part of the 25 service from Langley Park to Newcastle will be replaced by a new hourly 725 service between Langley Park and Chester-le-Street. This will be operated by Weardale Motor Services. Go North East will continue to operate the Chester-le-Street to Newcastle section of the 25 service, now hourly.
- Service 28/28A between Chester-le-Street and Newcastle will be replaced by new services 28/29. This will see two buses per hour reinstated between Chester-le-Street and Ouston via Pelton Fell, Grange Villa and Beamish which existed before September 2021.
- Service 28 will continue via Birtley to Gateshead and Newcastle while service 29 will operate to Newcastle via Kibblesworth. The evening service will remain as now, with service 28B running via Birtley and Kibblesworth.
- Service 30 between Stanley to Quaking House and 31 East Stanley to Stanley will now be operated by JH Travel. The timetables will remain the same.
- Go North East service 61 will be extended from Murton to Peterlee via South Hetton, partially replacing links previously served by service 62. Service 62A between Easington Village and Peterlee via Easington Colliery and Horden will now run as service 208, at slightly different times.
- The X62 service between Peterlee and Durham City will continue to operate unchanged.
- A number of early morning and evening buses that were to have stopped running will now restart to operate. On school days, JH Coaches will take over service 890 to Park View School's North Lodge site and a new 874 service from Sacriston to Hermitage Academy. Stanley Travel will operate service 808 from Castleside to Consett Academy and 836 from Burnopfield to Tanfield School.
- Except where noted above, the services remain operated by Go North East.
Posters are currently being put up at about 1,300 bus stops in County Durham ready for the changes coming into effect on 24 July.