Sadness at bus service axe

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A COUNCILLOR has spoken of his disappointment over plans to scrap a bus that links Scarborough with the North Yorkshire Moors.

Cllr Nick Harvey said he was lobbying to have MoorsBus services extended to Filey when he heard it was to be scrapped to save money.

Nick Harvey - local elections Green party candidate for Hertford ward'070520b     in Specials     pic rp

Nick Harvey - local elections Green party candidate for Hertford ward'070520b in Specials pic rp

The service, which runs between April and October and carries 12,000 passengers a year, could be scaled back next year and axed by the end of 2013.

“I think it’s a retrograde step,” Cllr Harvey said. “We should be expanding public transport not cutting it back. A lot of money had already been spent on developing that service.”

The bus service has also been credited with preventing traffic tailbacks polluting the national park.

The proposal to scrap the MoorsBus service is one of a series of measures aimed at saving the national park £1.5 million, after funding from local authorities and central government for the National Park Authority was cut.

A spokesperson said: “Loss of external funding and increasing operating costs mean that it will no longer be possible to maintain the MoorsBus network beyond 2013. There will be a reduction in the number of operating days from 2012 and the service will cease at the end of October 2013.”

Plans to axe 12 jobs and reduce hours for a further 15 staff members have also been revealed.

Andy Wilson, the National Park Authority’s chief executive, said the cuts were unavoidable. He said: “We have listened carefully to the public’s priorities and done all we can to maximise efficiency and thus protect the most valued services.

“As a result, conservation work and grants will be very largely protected.

“I appreciate that people will be disappointed but we are facing a real-term reduction in funding of 35 per cent. “We already have low administrative and staffing costs so reduction in some services is inevitable.”