Bus changes could leave community isolated

Havercroft could be left with no bus services to Barnsley or Hemsworth. People aren't very happy. Councillors Faith Heptinstall and Albert Manifield with residents.
Havercroft could be left with no bus services to Barnsley or Hemsworth. People aren't very happy. Councillors Faith Heptinstall and Albert Manifield with residents.

People living in Havercroft could be left ‘isolated’ by plans to withdraw bus services from the village.

That’s the claim from campaigners as Arriva Yorkshire plans changes to the 194 and 195 services which would mean no buses from the village to Barnsley or Hemsworth.

Commuters and councillors say the changes would affect workers, shoppers and schoolchildren.

Crofton, Ryhill and Walton councillor Albert Manifield, whose ward covers Havercroft, said: “People are up in arms about all of the changes and plans and rightly so.

“The most disappointing part of it all is that there has been no proper consultation.

“I only found out from one of the people who use the services.”

The proposed changes would mean no buses running down Cow Lane and into Havercroft.

Instead, they would only serve Newstead Lane, in Fitzwilliam, and then head out to Barnsley and Hemsworth.

Coun Manifield said: “These changes could have a massive impact on an awful lot of people in Havercroft and leave a lot of questions unanswered.

“How will the youngsters from Havercroft get to Crofton Academy?

“How will people get to Barnsley for work and how will people get to Hemsworth for their shopping?

“The buses through Havercroft are really well used. It will affect all ages and we’re really angry about it because it’s just come out of the blue.

“We haven’t even had the opportunity to put our views to them.”

Coun Manifield said he has written to Arriva Yorkshire calling on them to consult passengers in Havercroft about the changes.

Councillors Maureen Cummings and Faith Heptinstall have also objected to the proposed changes and have vowed to fight them.

Arriva Yorkshire said the changes would ensure that services in Havercroft would run on time.

Nigel Featham, regional managing director for Arriva Yorkshire, said : “We can confirm that we will be introducing some service changes at the end of October in order to improve the reliability of the 194 195 and 196 bus routes.

“From next month some services will no longer serve Cow Lane due to the low number of passengers making the journey towards Barnsley, however residents will still have a bus every 30 minutes into Wakefield.

“We made the decision to transfer this resource to ensure the local services remain punctual for our customers.”

For more information visit www.arrivabus.co.uk/yorkshire/