Ipswich: Firms square up for new bus war

ANOTHER round of bus wars is looming in the town after First Eastern Counties registered its intention to start running services in the east of the town.

It plans to start new services to the hospital and Warren Heath, with buses using Spring Road.

The company has registered the routes with the Vehicle & Operators’ Service Authority (VOSA) and plans to introduce services later this summer.

A spokeswoman for First said: “We have undertaken a review of our networks across the region and despite the harsh economic climate, are pleased to be making improvements to our services in the Ipswich area.

“Many of the changes are as a result of feedback and suggestions from customers, and the focus has been, where possible, to provide more direct links and quicker journey times in order to make public transport a more attractive option.”

The move has sparked a response from Ipswich Buses, which already operates services in that part of the town.

Managing director Malcolm Robson said he was already planning to fight back: “They have stepped up their services in this part of the town in the past, it seems to be an area that they are particularly interested in.

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“Some of these services run over exactly the same routes as ours so we will be looking at a robust response over the next few weeks.

“We will publishing details very soon, and ensuring that we protect our business.”