Shropshire Council has agreed to renew Minsterley Motors’ contract to run Ludlow’s town services – the 701 and the 722 (which serves the park and ride). This is seriously good news and I know that the decision will be popular with bus users.
We’ve had more than our fair share of bus troubles in Ludlow. There was a time when buses had no disabled or buggy access and broke down with depressing regularity. After R&B withdrew from running the services, Minsterley stepped in at short notice. The quality of service was a revelation with new, low floor buses and friendly bus drivers.
Mind you, there were still problems. At one point we had bus services reduced because they were too popular! The routing was “all ’round the Wrekin”. There were no services to Tollgate Road. And we still had a few bus breakdowns though Minsterley has a spare low floor bus on hand to keep the service going.
Finally, on 23 February this year, we settled down with the 701 and 722 services. That works just fine, although it would be better if the buses left the town centre 15 minutes apart rather than at the same time. But the quality of the service is excellent.
Today, Shropshire Council confirmed that Minsterley has retained the contract to run the town services. That’s excellent news. We’ve had too much chopping and changing on Ludlow’s buses.
On other bus news, Worcestershire County Council has been retendering the 2L Ludlow to Kidderminster. The current operator Diamond tried to expand the service but it has proved unreliable and I have received a lot of complaints. We should know shortly whether Diamond will retain the contract, or whether a new operator will step in.