Council leader hits out at ‘managed decline’ after more cuts to bus services

Further bus cuts are to hit Sheffield and South Yorkshire following the news that another company will cease operations from this week.

HCT Group confirmed on August 4 that its bus companies, Powells and CT Plus, will close and services will stop running from Monday 8 August.

The organisation operates 19 services across South Yorkshire, 10 routes in Sheffield, and employs around 50 members of staff.

The South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority says it is working with bus companies and local authorities across the region to put on alternative services where possible.

Councillor Terry Fox, leader of Sheffield City Council, said South Yorkshire’s bus links are critical to its economy.

He warned “The impact this will have on the elderly, young people, families and more at such short notice is disgraceful and the people of Sheffield deserve more.

“The service needs to meet the needs of residents, helping them get to work, to earn a living, attend doctor and hospital appointments and generally travel across the city.

“Staff and unions have also raised concerns about how little time they were given about these cuts, and the loss of 50 jobs is extremely disappointing.

“Sadly we have very little direct influence over bus providers and for many years we have demanded more powers from Government, and for more investment into public transport. But instead, we are seeing a managed decline of bus services throughout the North.

“The council is trying to do everything it can – we recently launched the city centre shuttle bus, Sheffield Connect, and have spent millions on improving roads and the connectivity of the network.

“But due to national lack of investment this isn’t counting for a lot in retaining decent and wide-ranging bus services in the city.”