Recession forces bus service alterations

SUFFOLK: A series of major bus services will be drastically altered in cost-cutting measures caused by the turbulent economic climate.

SUFFOLK: A series of major bus services will be drastically altered in cost-cutting measures caused by the turbulent economic climate.

First East England Buses have announced the changes to the majority of their services in and out of Ipswich will take effect as of Sunday, November 15.

The alterations to services were detailed in a letter to The Evening Star from managing director Alan Pilbeam.

Among the changes include the scrapping of the hourly services on Routes 63 and 65 to Framlingham and Rendlesham respectively.

Instead people travelling to and from these areas will have a two-hourly service.

The frequency of the Bixley to Ipswich Route 62 will also be adjusted, reducing from once every 20 minutes to once every half-an-hour.

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Meanwhile, all overnight services on the Martlesham Heath to Ipswich Route 66 will be axed.

As a result, the last journey from Martlesham will be at 12.20am and from Ipswich Railway Station at 12.54am. Services 87, to Stowupland and 88 to Stowmarket will also experience reductions and other services operated by the company will see alterations to times.

But as part of the new plans, resulting from “the turbulent economic climate of the last year,” First Buses has announced a new link with Ipswich Hospital.

The number 75 Grange Farm to Ipswich service will now stop directly in the grounds of the hospital, providing more convenient access for staff, visitors and patients.

Gussy Alamein, spokesman for First East England, said: “During these difficult economic times, like all businesses in the country, we must focus on providing services that match customer demand.

“By doing so this will allow us to make best use of the resources we have available. We remain committed to delivering the very best possible level of buses services to the people of Suffolk.”

How will the service changes affect you? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk