Published:
December 23, 2016
Saved! Burnham-On-Sea's route 67 bus will continue until March 2017

Temporary funding for Burnham-On-Sea's route 67 bus service has been further extended to allow more time to explore potential community-led replacements, it has been confirmed this week.

As first reported here by Burnham-On-Sea.com, the route links Wookey Hole and Wells to Burnham-On-Sea and emergency funding from Somerset County Council has been in place since the end of May when since its operator, Webberbus, ceased trading at short notice.

This funding was due to end on 31st December but will now be extended until 4th March, the council announced on Thursday.

This is to allow continued talks between the County Council, parishes and communities about possible options for some form of replacement service. From 3rd January, 2017 the service will continue to be provided by Bakers Dolphin.

"The response from the community has been considerable and we welcome that," Councillor David Fothergill, Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport, told Burnham-On-Sea.com.

"We are extending the emergency funding to see if talks can be turned into tangible, community-driven options for a replacement service of some kind."

"There are still no commercial operators willing to take on the service and we cannot continue to pay these additional costs in the long-term. However, we want to make sure there is time to properly explore any options that might to some extent fill the gap."

The County Council spends around £1.6m subsidising bus services across the county. It also funds the Slinky service and financially supports demand responsive Community Transport schemes by covering half the cost of fares for journeys made using concessionary bus passes.

The Burnham stage of the service will now also be retained - even though a timetable was published by the council earlier this week showing it would start and end at Highbridge Railway Station, as we reported here.

 

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