Cutbacks: Is that the end for Moorsbus?

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The excellent Moorsbus service on the North York Moors has now finished for summer, possibly forever. What a crying shame it would be if this popular and reliable network were to disappear. Whenever I have used the service it has always been well used, especially with groups of walkers, who often create a friendly atmosphere on the journeys.

Buses come from the surrounding major towns and cities, like York, Hull and Middlesbrough, which then spend the rest of the day crossing the Moors. All the routes are scenic and tickets can include the Esk Valley trains as well as the North Yorkshire Moors Railway. A perfectly organised network has developed after 20 years of experience. But a gradual erosion of the service in recent years has seen it cut from every day in August to just Wednesdays and Sundays and finally this year to Sundays only. The wonderful Moorsbus coordinators made sure everyone caught their buses, especially the last one going home.

Whichever way you look at it, this drastic cut makes no sense. Local businesses in the towns and villages will suffer, as well as the environment when people will have to use their cars, if they have one. I can only hope everyone affected will tell their local councillor, MP, North Yorkshire County Council and the Moors National Park Authority, how they feel about this issue. I am sure Friends of Moorsbus would like to be copied in to any emails too (friendsofmoorsbus@outlook.com).

DalesBus is set up very differently to Moorsbus, and is even able to run services from York, Lancashire and West Yorkshire during the winter months. Despite a year on year increase in passengers, even the future of DalesBus is not secure in these austere times. So, if the good folk of Scarborough want to enjoy the beauty of a crisp sunny day in the Dales from Northallerton or York or Harrogate (details at http://www.dalesbus.org/), please do so - before it goes the same way as Moorsbus and only the lucky few will have access to our glorious Yorkshire countryside.

Paul Kirby

Wetherby