Call for new Shrewsbury bus route to help ease traffic and parking woes

Calls have been made for a new bus route around the suburbs of Shrewsbury to help ease traffic woes and take the stress out of parking at the hospital.

SHREWS COPYRIGHT SHROPSHIRE STAR JAMIE RICKETTS 25/09/2020 - Shrewsbury Bus Station..
SHREWS COPYRIGHT SHROPSHIRE STAR JAMIE RICKETTS 25/09/2020 - Shrewsbury Bus Station..

Shrewsbury councillor Bernie Bentick is calling for a new peripheral route to travel through various wards and make stops at Meole Retail Park and Royal Shrewsbury Hospital.

Councillor Bentick, who is the Lib Dem member for Meole, is keen to get a new service up and running to make it easier for people to get to and from the hospital, and ease the gridlock at peak times at the retail park.

"I'm exploring the possibility of an additional peripheral bus service that would go around the outskirts of Shrewsbury, including rural routes," he said.

"It would serve those that want to go to the retail park (Meole), or GP surgeries or the hospital. A lot of people struggle to get parked at the hospital.

Councillor Bernie Bentick

"I've asked Arriva about it and I've mentioned it to Shrewsbury Town Council. Then hopefully I can take it to Shropshire Council to see if it's something that could be introduced.

"It's about getting an agreement with Arriva to see if it would be a viable route that would make money. We'd need to see if there would be a sufficient amount of interest in people that would want to use it, and then giving it a trial."

Mr Bentick hopes the service would run from Harlescott, through Monkmoor, Underdale, Sutton Farm, and Meole.

Bus services and travel in the town was one of the more contentious issues when the masterplan from the Shrewsbury Big Town Plan partnership was unveiled earlier this year.

The idea of getting rid of the bus station in favour of a more robust park and ride offering was met with a backlash, and the travel strategy is to be rethought.

One new service that was trialled in recent years was the Shrewsbury night bus, which took revellers into town late at night to enjoy themselves in the restaurants, pubs and clubs. There were two routes, one in the north of the town and one in the south, and it ran on Friday and Saturday nights over the festive period. It didn't continue due to a lack of demand.

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