'Forgotten village' near Warsop as residents left isolated by bus cancellations

Residents of Meden Vale have hit out at bus operator Stagecoach after their repeated service cancellations mean children are unable to get to school, and residents are forking out for expensive taxis to get to work.

Thursday, 7th April 2022, 4:39 pm

Customers of Stagecoach East Midlands have hit out once more after repeated cancellations of the firm’s Service 11 have left residents of Meden Vale unable to commute to work, school or essential doctors appointments.

The service, which runs from Meden Vale to Market Warsop and Mansfield has faced a number of cancellations daily, which the operator has said is down to national driver shortage challenges.

Stagecoach East Midlands has issued a statement confirming that new drivers will be joining teams ‘in the coming weeks’ but residents have said the problem has been going on for ‘far too long’ and criticised the firm’s handling of the cancellations, often giving limited notice of cancellations on Twitter.

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Ged Laydon is one of many residents affected by the bus problems at Meden Vale.

Meden Vale resident Ged Laydon said: “We accepted the restricted service during lockdown, but we expected improvement by now, however it is only getting worse.

"We are used to four or five buses being cancelled on a daily basis, the Twitter site keeps us informed of these, but then they regularly cancel others with a few minutes’ notice leaving people stranded or late for work.

“Those heading to work or school each morning are left with no option other than to get a taxi or rearrange plans, but Meden Vale no longer has a doctors’ surgery so the elderly people who rely on the bus to Warsop for appointments are losing out.

“In the last three months, I have spent over £200 on taxis and lost many hours in wages, not to mention spending money each week on a mega rider which is essentially worthless.

"Stagecoach offer no excuse other than driver shortage, but this has been going on for far too long now.”

Laura Ward also struggles to commute to work because of the cancellations.

She said: “The whole service is disgusting, I use these buses every day for work and I am constantly being late.

"It isn’t just the number 11 bus either – yesterday we ended up stranded for 45 minutes at Mansfield bus station waiting to get home.

"Two bus services were taken off, which meant there were no buses to get home, and I had children to pick up.

"I pay £47 a month direct out of my wages for my bus pass and I am not getting the benefit from it – I am having to spend more money to get to work each day.”

A spokesperson for Stagecoach East Midlands said: “As a result of the national driver shortage challenges we are having to reduce some of our services to keep essential routes running.

"Some journeys on Service 11 have been affected."We are taking proactive steps to alleviate the short-term staffing situation and our recent recruitment campaigns has seen us recruit over 100 drivers.

"Training takes around three months, which means new drivers will be joining teams in the coming weeks.“We are working hard despite the current challenges to ensure the vast majority of services continue running and we would like to thank all of our passengers for their patience and apologise for any inconvenience caused."

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