Bus routes facing the end of the road?

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A NUMBER of subsidised bus services in Levenmouth are being examined by Fife Council.

The local authority pays operator Stagecoach £900,000 per year in order to make some of its less profitable routes in mid-Fife, which includes Levenmouth, more financially viable.

Across the Kingdom it spends £3.6million in total but with mid-Fife’s current contract up for renewal next year the local authority is seeking the views of the public on 19 of its routes.

Routes up for consultation locally include the X4, 43, 44 and 46 which serve Leven-Glenrothes-Whitehill and take in the areas of Lower Largo, Lundin Links, Leven, Kennoway, Aberhill and Methil. The 48 and 49 Leven-Buckhaven-Kennoway-Leven circular, which also cover Methil, Methilhill and Windygates, are also under review.

Without funding Stagecoach would be under no obligation to continue a service.

A spokesman for the council said: “Transportation and environmental services are looking for feedback on what subsidised bus services are most important to residents of mid-Fife

“All feedback received will be taken into account when contracts for subsidised bus routes are renewed in August 2013.

“We’re interested in finding out the places/facilities you go to by bus and what times you need or prefer to travel.”

The consultation is to last until the end of the month although officers have already carried out on-bus surveys with passengers earlier this year, and passenger movements have been analysed using ticket machine data. 

A questionnaire has been set up, and can be filled in at Leven Bus Station or online at www.fifedirect.org.uk/haveyoursay.

Transportation staff will also be at Leven bus station tomorrow (Thursday) from 7.30-11.30am and 3-7pm.

Cllr Pat Callaghan, executive member for transport and environment, added: “Many people depend on bus services to get to work, college, appointments and to access shopping and leisure facilities.

“I’d encourage everyone to take a few minutes to fill out the questionnaire for the services you use so that we can make sure our resources are being used in the best way possible.”