Friday, 13 July 2018

Stagecoach to Consult on Network Review

Service 2 heading for the University
Under the proposals this service will be run with single-deckers.
The re-opening of Greyhound Bridge in Lancaster in September will see some changes to Stagecoach's services in the city and passengers are being invited to have their say.

The changes mainly concern services that run between Lancaster University, the city centre, Morecambe and Heysham and are designed to better cater for increased demand from students living in Lancaster and Morecambe/Heysham.

Services 2/2A,  3/3A  and 4  (parts of which are currently running as U2, U3, U3R and U4) will be replaced by the following new services. There will also be changes to service 2X.

Service 1  University - Greaves Road - City - Torrisholme - Morecambe (Euston Road) - Battery, then either Kingsway or Heysham Road and Sugham Lane to Mossgate Park, which will be served for the first time. From Kingsway buses will run in a loop via Mossgate Park and A589 to Heysham Towers, returning via A589 and either Heysham Road or Sugham Lane/Kingsway to Morecambe and Lancaster.  Combermere Road will not be served by this service.
This service replaces service 2/2A between City Centre and Heysham and service 3 between University and Morecambe.
Buses will run every 10 minutes, with the section between University and City Centre reduced to every 20 minutes in university holidays.

Service 2. University - Hala - Bowerham - City - Torrisholme - Low Lane - Bare - Promenade - Morecambe Bus Station - Heysham Road - Heysham Village - Combermere Road.

This service replaces existing service 2 between University and city centre and services 3
Service 3 at the Clock Tower.
The link between Lancaster and Morecambe promenade will be 
provided by new service 2 in future.
and 4 between city centre and Heysham.  All journeys will run via Torrisholme Road and Low Lane. Scale Hall Lane will not be served by this service (it will continue to be served by service 1) and the section of Bare Lane between Torrisholme and Fairhope Avenue will have no bus service at all. The section of Bare Lane beyond Fairhope Avenue will keep its four buses an hour to Lancaster and Morecambe, but they will be more evenly spaced.
Buses will run every 15 minutes between University and Morecambe Bus Station with two buses an hour continuing to Combermere Road.  This frequency will apply all year round. From Combermere Road these journeys will continue back to Lancaster as service 2X

Service 2X Lancaster - Heysham Link Road - Combermere Road - Battery.
The two buses an hour that arrive at Combermere Road on service 2 (see above) will continue to Lancaster on service 2X and will continue to offer a fast service from Heysham to Lancaster, albeit from Heysham Road and Heysham Village rather than Kingsway. The two buses will run an even 30 minutes apart rather than every 20/40 minutes as presently provided.
Similar arrangements apply to buses from Lancaster, which on arrival at Combermere Road will continue to Heysham Village, Heysham Road and the Battery (and back to Lancaster via Bare)

Service 4.  University - Hala - Barton Road - Bowerham - Railway Station - Lancaster Bus Station.
This service follows the route of the current U4 service as far as Queen Square and then runs via the railway station and the quay to the Bus Station. It will not continue to Heysham, which is now served  by new service 2.
Buses will run every 30 minutes all year round.
This map from Stagecoach shows the new service pattern

Other Changes

Service 6A  Lancaster - Salt Ayre - Westgate - Morecambe  will be improved from 1 bus per hour to 2 buses per hour.  
Service 6  Hampsfell Drive - Westgate - Morecambe will also run every 30 minutes to give a combined 15 minute service between Westgate and Morecambe.

There will also be changes to the services linking Lancaster with Preston and Blackpool and in the way the university is served by these routes.
The times of buses on service 40 (not via the university) and service 41 (via the university) will be switched and the times of the 42 will be altered to obtain a better spread of service between Lancaster and Garstang.  One bus an hour will be extended to Morecambe to reinstate the through service between Preston and the resort and the direct link from Lancaster via Morecambe Road.

Services not mentioned above will have no, or only very minor, changes.

Our View

The Bus Users' Group welcomes the changes in general albeit with some reservations.

The changes will mean that the most frequent service between the city centre and the University will also be the most direct - the new service 1. Stagecoach intend that most passengers to and from the university will opt for this service and double-deckers will be provided to ensure sufficient capacity. 
Bowerham buses will then have more room for local passengers and for students - and others - travelling from Bowerham to the University and vice-versa.
Bowerham passengers will also have a consistent service throughout the year with no reductions in the holidays. These reductions will, of course, transfer to the Greaves Road service, although that route also has the 3 buses an hour on the Preston and Blackpool services.

Greaves Road loses its link to the railway station, but Bowerham Road gains it!

The Group particularly welcomes the new service to Mossgate Park, the improved service on the 6A and the better spacing of buses between Garstang and Preston all of which we have campaigned for.

We are disappointed that Stagecoach has not been able to find a way to serve the Lancaster City Retail Park off Mellishaw Lane (particularly when service 2X passes so close to the site without being able to stop) and we doubt strongly that the proposal to remove buses completely from Bare Lane will be well-received. It also remains to be seen whether the extra buses  running via Fulwood Drive and Warwick Avenue on new service 2 will be appreciated by residents.

Have Your Say

network changesSomething we can't fault Stagecoach for, however, is the efforts they are making to communicate the changes to the public. The new network won't be introduced until mid-September but the outline proposals are already on the website here.  That link also leads to a comment form, where you can make your views known to the company.

Stagecoach is also holding two Consultation Days in Lancaster Bus Station, where a senior manager will be present to explain the proposals and receive feedback.  These are on:

Tuesday, 17th July  between 0800 and 1800  and
Wednesday 18th July between 0800 and 1630.

So why not go along and learn more about what is being proposed.  If you are unable to make either of those dates you can use this link to send your feedback to the company or please write to the Bus Users Group by using the comments box below.


  1. Will the 2x run later at nite or any 2 or 2a run to combermere at nite so i dont have to walk 15mins home in the dark i find it stupid that the buses finish early eveing and have to walk home in this day and age yet if i was a student i could get a bus at any time of day and cheap not fair at all!!!!!!!

    1. From the first draft timetables we have seen the last 2X will arrive at Combermere Road from Lancaster direct at 19.13. The last arrival at Combermere Road will be the new service 2 bus at 19.16.

  2. Not happy that the 2x is not going through Kingsway. It seem that you put a service on it starts getting busy and you remove it from an estate where a lot of people use it. Time to start using a car again typical STAGEJOKE!!!! why alter something that's not broken. I have spoken to many drivers and they all have the same opinion that it's not going to work. When I asked who decides this I was told a commercial department that operates from Carlisle with staff that have now local knowledge. So Who's has decided this then pen pushes behind desks that don't listen to there employees on the for front that speak with their passengers on daily a basis. Also does this mean your customers that live here all year are going to suffer with late buses again. As it was a great improvement when they started at lancaster bus station back to Morecambe instead of always running late coming down from the university. Not a very happy regular passenger, after the changes I will be an ex passenger. I pay £15.50 per week for a ticket after seeing this I spoke with a friend that also buys a weekly ticket we said that we will car share instead. NOT HAPPY!!!!

  3. Get rid of the 6 and do as they do on Sunday. 6a from Lancaster via hampsfell drive. That way every bus that goes through Westgate serves all areas of the 6 and gives a direct link to Lancaster. Leave service 18 at a 40 minute service rather than 30 as 30 doesn't work with traffic, numerous trips were dropped and passengers complained at how late the buses ran at 30 minutes but now all praise 40 minutes.
    Service 7 to the vale should only serve George Street up until 3pm. After that no body gets off there and buses are stuck fighting traffic at busy times for no reason at all. Other times they are forced to sit up at George Street for up to 10 minutes blocking the road with very impatient passengers who are intending on catching a connecting bus towards Morecambe and often miss as the driver has to stay on George Street until the timetable says they can go

  4. Why oh why are you changing the 2X service it is a lifeline for Kingsway and mossgate residents, first you took it off oxcliffe road and now kingsway what are us pensioners supposed to domwho live on kingsway and rely on this service the no 2 goes yes but takes forever to get to Lancaster. Please dont change this service.

  5. Why are day riders £3.40 in some parts of the northwest and £5 in the Lancaster and Morecambe area? It's miles cheaper on the train for a day return to Lancaster on the train from bare lane for example is £2.20 yet stagecoach want you to purchase a day rider which costs £5 as it's cheaper than buying a return ticket? Also why not introduce an off peak day rider that's half price from 2pm to encourage people to go out in the afternoons and evenings? Your marketing department wants sacking as they don't encourage growth in your company.

    1. Another example were Stagecoach gets wrong is Carnforth to Lancaster. It takes the bus 40-mins and cost £6.80 return, yet the train takes 10-mins and cost only £2.20 return.

  6. I cannot see the reason to serve Mossgate Park unless Stagecoach are receiving a section 106 payment. The estate has been underconstruction for over 10 years and if a bus service was gradually introduced during it's development then there was a chance it may have been successful. I think it could be a case of Stagecoach missing the bus!

  7. I can't see why we are losing buses down bare lane ? How does that benefit Morecambe people changing this service to no 3 and 4 , it looks like your favouring the Lancaster side more and stuffing Morecambe tbf

  8. I think some people in the comments might do well to remember that much of the stagecoach network in Lancaster and Morecambe is made viable by the very same students they blame for ruining their service.

  9. Personally I think that all buses should travel to combermere road every night because a lot of people especially children have to walk from heysham towers at night if they live in higher heysham.

    1. Should try walking from Heysham Harbour to Heysham Towers, before stagecoach took-over there were four buses an hour to the Harbour.

  10. 2X - As a staff member at Lancaster University the 2X is my lifeline!!! If you change this it will increase my travel time in both directions to work and home and make my days longer. I also have health issues which mean walking to the new route is not a possibility at this time. Do you realise that this service has been mucked about with from day one, changed its route on numerous occassions, changed it route number 4 times!!! The residence have fought last year to keep this service on Kingsway and we got it back. This should show you the feeling that this service is required. We have had to go through moving the service in times due to bridge works from 7:53 forward to 7:31 and still supported this service that is how much it means to us!!! Please do not change the 2X route. I am currently forwarding this information to Lancaster University travel planners as I am sure they have not been consulted about this.

  11. There seems to be really poor provision here for The Marsh/Railway station. The journey from the Marsh of a morning is already really long-winded (especially going round town via the bus station and common garden street), which is going to be much worse by the fact it will be via Hala (which is always slower of a morning). The 2X no longer servicing the Marsh is going to further reduce an already sparse service. The one advantage may be in the evening where fewer people not travelling to the railway will want to get on it. Also, is there better provision for rush-hour services from the Marsh? I start work at 8.30 am, so the timings of the buses at certain periods in the year is horrible - I don't mind walking into town this year as the weather has been remarkable, but it is pretty rubbish in the usual Lancaster weather! Finally, there are often insufficient buses running from campus around 6pm (not just to the Marsh - as there aren't any after 6.15pm) so if you are leaving the gym at that time, you have to wait for 45 mins for a bus that you can actually get onto. As per the comments about the 2X, the Marsh services seem to have changed every year since I started living there (6 years ago), and seem to be cut back each time they are changed.

  12. If the new service 2 is going to be every 15 mins instead of every 10 mins and is going to have single deckers instead of double deckers, will there be any space on the buses in the mornings after they have picked everyone up at the Park Hotel and Bowerham Hotel?

  13. Does anyone know what time the last bus from Lancaster along Heysham Road will be ?

  14. Very disappointed that there are no services to the station via Greaves Road . Why are the buses along Greaves Road always reduced when it's not U term time but not through Bowerham . Will welcome Preston and Blackpool buses not coming at the same time as 3s ( 1s ? )

    1. Because more people live on the Bowerham Road route than the Greaves Road route?

  15. The consultation is a bit pathetic . Alexandra Square tomorrow when students are on holiday and how are people supposed to know . I just found out about today's consultation when it was over .I have just tried to comment via the link and it wouldn't accept my comment ( said it had to be a string whatever that is . I imagine the average bus user who doesn't use the bus station will not be able to comment or know anything about it .

  16. It seems to me the changes are geared towards students with not much thought for pensioners. The lack of a bus service on Bare Lane will cause problems for a lot of elderly people in my area

    1. Have you considered that the students are basically paying for the service?

  17. Went up to consultation at University which was useful .Alexandra Square was busy but mostly with those graduating . I think there ought to be another one perhaps in Morecambe .

  18. Any chance of a clearer version of that map?

  19. No consultation event in Morecambe?