Shropshire Star

Popular bus service to be expanded with discount offered to users

A popular Shropshire bus service will be expanded from this month with new users to be offered 50 per cent off travel for the first two weeks.


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Shropshire Council has announced that it's 'On-Demand' electric bus service will be expanded from Monday, July 15 to include the Sutton Farm area of Shrewsbury.

The 'Connect On-Demand' service was launched in December last year with buses initially working in two zones on the fringes of the county town, and including areas that were not on any current bus routes.

The council plans to expand the service on a zone-by-zone basis, and 'Zone Two' has seen the latest update, being expanded to include areas such as Tilstock Crescent, Sutton Road, Sutton Way, Mereside, Tudor Road and Marden Medical Practice.

A Connect On-Demand bus

The service is unique as the electric buses are only sent out when passengers have booked. It's hoped that the expansion of the zone will provide members of the communities with more options for travel in and out of Shrewsbury town centre.

The 'Connect On-Demand' service has replaced the 544, Shrewsbury to Lyth Hill, and 546, Shrewsbury to Pulverbatch, bus services through zone one, and provides links to the new residential developments at Oteley Road in Shrewsbury in zone two - not previously served by public transport.

And, in addition to the expansion of zone two, the Abbey Church will be added to the list of bus stops for the On-Demand service within Shrewsbury town centre for bus users from both zones.

New users who have signed up for the service on or after July 1, and who are travelling to or from 'Zone Two' are being offered a 50 per cent discount between Monday, July 15 and Wednesday, July 31.

The service is also offering all passengers a 50 per cent discount between August 1 and 31, by using the promo code 'SUMMER24' - app only.

Shropshire Council's cabinet member responsible for public transport, Ian Nellins, is delighted with the popularity of the service so far, and excited to provide expansion.

He said: "Following the successful launch of the Connect On-Demand service back in December, the service has gone from strength-to-strength.

"Our commitment to providing flexible and convenient travel options has already seen great success in communities such as Pulverbatch, Longden, Hook-A-Gate, and Oteley Road in Shrewsbury. The feedback provided has been incredibly valuable and we are really pleased with the positive engagement from the local community.

"I'm delighted that we can now expand the service further to include the Sutton Farm area and I encourage people in that area to make use of the service, and take advantage of the special introductory offer."

Two public roadshows are being held to give members of the public an opportunity to find out more about the service and ask any questions. The first takes place on Saturday, July 27 at the Charles Darwin Public House car park between 10am and 1pm, while the second will be held at the Mereside Community Centre car park between 2pm and 5pm on Saturday, August 3.

The service currently operates between Monday and Saturday from 7.30am to 6.30pm - excluding bank holidays.

Commuters can book a journey using the 'Connect On-demand' app - or by phone by calling 0345 678 9013 between 10am and 2pm. Users of the service can choose where they would like to be picked up, and when, and where they want to be dropped off.

Councillor for Bayston Hill, Column and Sutton, Rosemary Dartnall, said: "Extending Zone 2 of the Connect On-Demand bus service to more areas of Sutton and Column is a really positive move for all who live here.

"Residents of Sutton Farm and Springfield have suffered declining frequency and time-limited bus services for several years. Connect On-Demand will operate here to supplement the limited hours of buses currently on offer, ensuring more people can rely on public transport for their journeys."

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