Bus to London down to one night service

National Express have reduced their Cairnryan to London service
National Express have reduced their Cairnryan to London service

Galloway MSP Finlay Carson expressed his disappointment this week at National Express for refusing to postpone the commencement of their new timetable for the consolidated bus service to London.

The Galloway and West Dumfries MSP wrote to National Express after being contacted by a large number of constituents angered by reducing services from two buses from Cairnryan to London daily to one overnight only service.

Many of those who got in touch with Mr Carson to raise objections about the change used the service to visit family and friends.

There was widespread concern about being dropped off at bus stations at an unearthly hour, with a lack of or no onward travel options, and having to rely on family members picking people up in the middle of the night.

Mr Carson asked the company to postpone the proposed commencement date of July 1 and consult those who use the service about their plans but National Express have refused to postpone the change.

A National Express spokesman said: “We carried out an extensive review of this route due to low customer numbers, which were continuing to decline, and loss in revenue.

The decision was made to remove five steps and consolidate the 920 and 921 into one service.

“While we welcome local feedback on our services and remain committed to providing transport solutions to plug gaps in connectivity, we really need people to ‘vote with their feet’ and actually use our services regularly to ensure that they are sustainable.

The impact of the changes will of course be monitored as part of our continuous review and improvement process”.

Mr Carson said: “I am disappointed that National Express have decided to press ahead with these changes without consultation and despite the very legitimate concerns expressed by users of the service.

“While I respect that the company are entirely entitled to make decisions surrounding timetabling based on commercial viability, they have let local people down by introducing this new timetable at such short notice.

“I asked them to postpone the commencement of the new service and they have simply refused.

“I would encourage those who have previously used the daytime service and who feel uncomfortable travelling through the night to continue to make their case to National Express, either through my office or to the company directly.

”Transport options are already limited in Galloway and West Dumfries and this is another kick in the teeth for local communities who feel isolated and slighted”.