Bus campaign in ‘high limbo’ awaiting results

Ribchester residents getting on the bus last week.
Ribchester residents getting on the bus last week.

Buses have been rolling in and out of Chipping and Ribchester, via Longridge, on their way to Clitheroe and Blackburn and back after an 11th hour reprieve, but the future is as yet still uncertain.

The reprieve is temporary - until the beginning of April - although submissions have been put to Lancashire County Council for these routes to be retained once the new, reduced structure, is put into place.

Transport officials, councillors and the county’s cabinet working group on bus services are currently formulating routes and timetables. Their recommendations then go to cabinet member for highways and transport, Coun John Fillis, who makes the final decision on how the £2million budget will be spent prior to to routes going out to tender, covering 12 months from April 2.

Coun David Smith, who has been working closely with bus campaigners in Chipping and Ribchester, who have put forward submissions, said this week he felt confident there would be a satisfactory outcome, adding he also wished to say how hard everyone had worked to secure bus services.

“They could not have done more,” he said, adding: “We are now in high limbo, waiting for the results of the discussions of the cabinet working group who will submit their recomendations to John Fillis, but I am confident they will go through and go out to tender.”

He said an extra diversion to include Brockhole Village and Old Langho on one of the local routes could, however, have an impact on the frequency of services in Chipping “because of the way they set up their time tables.”

But he hoped there would still be discussions on bus service frequency to the villages.