Sudden changes to bus timetable

Stagecoach bus
Stagecoach bus

From: Jeremy Goring, West Hill Road, St Leonards on Sea

People without cars who are dependent on public transport have long been dissatisfied with the services provided by Stagecoach in Hastings and St Leonards.

In recent weeks this dissatisfaction has intensified because of sudden changes made in one of its timetables.

For some years the two circular bus routes between the town centre and the Conquest Hospital - nos. 23 and 26 – have been divided, with the 23s and 26s travelling clockwise and the 23As and 26As anticlockwise.

This was a sensible arrangement because, for those catching a bus outside the hospital or the rail station, there was no confusion as to which one they should take.

With route 26 this division still obtains, but with route 23 it has been abandoned. The 23A runs no more.

What has caused most confusion, however, has been the total revision of the 23 timetable, which was made suddenly and without warning.

One would have expected that such an important alteration would have been well publicised long in advance of its implementation, with notices prominently displayed in buses and at bus stops. But nothing of the kind happened.

Some fortunate people happened to hear of the proposed change by word of mouth, but other less lucky ones remained in ignorance. They continued to rely on the existing timetables, which (at the time of writing) have still not been replaced.

The result was that some people were left standing fuming at bus stops waiting for buses that never arrived. This happened to me on three occasions: once, when I had an urgent appointment, I had to phone for a taxi.

If Stagecoach had any regard for the welfare of their passengers they would take care not to behave so irresponsibly.