Bring back half-hourly buses plea
RESIDENTS of Dunbeg want the old bus service to be reinstated after an increase in demand for seats during summer months.
New houses in the village and more people attending The Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS) have put pressure on the service throughout the year.
Residents say when the bus gets to Dunbeg it is full to ca- pacity with holidaymakers from North Ledaig Caravan Park.
They claim they are being refused entry due to a no standing policy on some of the buses and having to wait a whole hour for the next bus.
Margaret Macfarlane, 61, from Dunbeg, said: ‘Argyll and Bute council cut the funding for the half-hour-bus service to and from Dunbeg, but since then there have been more people using it.
‘Every summer we have problems getting on the hourly bus because people on holiday at Ledaig use it. The half-hour service should be reinstated.’
Peter Guy, 70, also from Dunbeg, said: ‘One day when the bus was full, the driver managed to squeeze me on, but others were not allowed, as it was a no standing bus.
‘Buses are still generally running late. In the good old days they were every half-hour.’
Councillor Iain Stewart MacLean, said: ‘I will be supporting the community in seeking to secure funding to reinstate a half-hourly service at peak times for this thriving village.’
Colin Craig, managing director of West Coast Motors, said: ‘The half-hourly service was introduced ahead of the planned housing development in 2008.
‘Unfortunately it did not materialise and the patronage level after three-years’ operation could not sustain the cost of the additional vehicle and driver used to provide this level of frequency, hence it’s reduction back to every hour in 2011.
‘At present we are using our highest capacity vehicles on this service to provide as many seats as possible. But if we can identify that a 30-minute service is sustainable to and from Dunbeg, we will look to reintroduce it for next summer.’
A spokeswoman for Argyll and Bute council said: ‘The council has plans for development in the Dunbeg area, and may visit again the frequency of this service in the future, but this may depend on availability of the Scottish government’s bus investment fund.’