Mansfield bus boss 'very sorry' for timetable disruptions

Stagecoach East Midlands have explained why bus users have experienced significant timetable issues and launches a recruitment drive.

Wednesday, 24th November 2021, 4:58 pm

Users of public transport in Mansfield have seen unprecedented disruptions to bus timetables in recent months and bus bosses have now outlined the reasons, along with a recruitment drive to help return to normal operation.

It is estimated that there is a shortfall of around 4,000 drivers across the country with drivers choosing to leave the business for a wide variety of reasons – some for HGV roles, while others have opted for early retirement – which is up by 55 per cent.

Matt Cranwell, managing director of Stagecoach East Midlands, explained the issues and admitted timetable reductions may need to be in place for the ‘remainder of this year’.

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A driver shortage has impacted bus travel in Mansfield for several months.

He explains: "During the past 18 months, we have experienced challenges like we have never seen before.

"Firstly, I could not have been prouder of the role that our team in Mansfield played in keeping buses running for key workers during the pandemic.

"Fast forward to now and whilst I still remain fiercely proud, I am frustrated that we currently aren’t able to offer communities in Mansfield our full service.

"As people will have seen in the news, there is a driver shortage across the country that is affecting the transport and logistics sector, including bus drivers.

"Bus driving remains an attractive profession, with flexible working, guaranteed hours and promotional opportunities – we’re pleased that we have no shortage of people wanting to come and drive our buses.”

The company have received more than 750 applicants for driver roles since August.

Mr Cranwell added: "Whilst we wait for our new drivers to be fully trained, it is impossible at the moment to say how long we expect this to last for but we are currently planning that reduced timetables will need to be in place for the remainder of this year.

"Whilst we are continuing to run over 96 per cent of our normal services throughout Mansfield, we know that this is causing inconvenience and disruption for some of our customers, and I am very sorry for that.

"If anybody reading this would like to apply, please visit stagecoachbus.com/careers.”

For the latest updates please go to stagecoachbus.com or Twitter @StagecoachEMid.

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