Arriva accused of Birstall Retail Park ‘bus route war’

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A fledgling bus company has accused Arriva of starting a bus war over a route connecting Dewsbury and Birstall Retail Park.

As reported in last week’s News, SGI Buses is running a 288 return service from Dewsbury to junction 27, the first of its kind. But Arriva Yorkshire have announced plans for a 280 service using the same route to begin on May 4, arriving just five minutes before its rival. SGI Buses manager Dale Steele said Arriva’s plans were ludicrous.

“Their service runs the same days, the same hours and has been timed to come exactly five minutes before our 288 service. As it stands now, you will wait 75 minutes then two buses will come within five minutes of each other. It’s ludicrous. They are more interested in trying to put us out of business than in providing a great public service. If Arriva want war, then so be it.”

Mr Steel said SGI Buses offered free returns and passengers that board with day tickets from other operators can use them to discount their fare to 50p.

Nigel Featham, managing director for Arriva Yorkshire, said: “We are aware that another operator is running a similar route, we believe that this is a positive enhancement for residents as it will improve their current network of services.”