Bus campaigners celebrate number 1 victory

By Steve Carpenter 03/04 Updated: 05/04 14:55

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Buy photos » Coun Bally Singh with bus users David Wildgoose, Brian Ingham and John Finnerty-Goode are happy their efforts have been heard. 14.012.023.cov.jg2

CAMPAIGNERS angered by changes to one of the city's oldest bus routes are celebrating after their concerns were put right by Centro bosses.

Almost 1,500 people signed a petition against changes made to the number 1 following a review of several major bus routes across the city.

The Observer received a large number of complaints from elderly residents and school children whose journey would be badly affected by the changes to the service which was also renamed the number 49.

But Steve Hayes, Centro area manager for Coventry, has said he would increase the frequency of buses along the route and make it more direct between Chapelfields, Earlsdon and the railway station.

The changes have yet to be finalised and are unlikely to be implemented until June at the earliest.

He has also agreed to look into the possibility of reinstating the service as the number 1, which will effectively bring back the oldest bus service in the city, dating back to 1926.

"Centro are reviewing patronage on all parts of the 49 service," Mr Hayes said.

"I would have no objection to renumbering this service 1 as the route would be comparable to the former service of that number."

Centro has also revealed it was looking to provide a direct link between the west and east side of the city after the 34 bus route was scrapped in the review although that was unlikely to happen until October.

Coun Bally Singh said: "I would like to thank all the people who signed our petition because it is they who made the difference.

"Coventry's oldest bus service linking Earlsdon and Chapelfields since 1926 would have been consigned to history were it not for the huge support we received."

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