Brighton and Hove Buses managing director Martin Harris
BUS users will be put off from travelling on public transport after a number of night time routes are axed next month.
That’s the belief of transport watchdog Buswatch, which describe the move as “drastic”.
The bus company says some of the routes are rarely used – and in some cases not a single passenger will travel after midnight.
Buswatch chairman Andrew Boag said the late-night service was vital.
He said: “It seems rather drastic. There’s an assumption from some that people only use the night bus after a night out but many people need it to get home from work.”
Passenger Jason Condra, who relies on the service for his nightly commute, said he could be left stranded after the service is scrapped in the New Year.
He said: “It’s very short notice.
“When I moved from Eastbourne three months ago, I was under the impression I would be able to take the night bus home.”
Mr Condra spent £200 on a 90-day network saver ticket to take him from his workplace near the Clock Tower on North Street to his home in Patcham.
He now says it wasn’t a worthwhile investment.
He added: “The cuts are going to lead to fewer people using the bus service in the future, which will lead to more cuts.
“If you’re a woman, you may feel vulnerable getting off in the middle of nowhere. I don’t think it’s very safe.”
The night bus will no longer serve Preston Park, Patcham or Hollingbury under the reductions, which come into effect on January 14.
Portslade and New Church Road, Hove, will also be affected.
Mr Boag is due to meet the Brighton and Hove Buses for a consultation on January 16, two days after the changes are implemented.
Brighton and Hove Buses managing director Martin Harris said: “The N1 and N5 services that come in from Whitehawk and Hollingbury/Patcham into town are usually empty and going the other way there are usually no more than three to four passengers. We’re retaining the westbound services where demand is higher. Plus, a good part of the N1 route serving Kemp Town is already covered by the N7 service.
“I sympathise with those handful of customers who are using these night services and can promise to keep them under review as with all our services.”
Source: The Argus