Falkirk’s circular bus gripe comes round again

editorial image

Bus operators have again defended their decision to replace a service that ran every 10 minutes with one that now arrives every half hour.

First Scotland East re-wrote its timetables in October after a review of its operations.

One of the services that came under the spotlight was the circular service from Falkirk Town Centre serving the communities of Camelon, Larbert, Stenhousemuir, Carron and Bainsford both ways.

Before the shake-up passengers could catch a bus to and from the town every 10 minutes – travelling either via Camelon or Bainsford – but on the Camelon run that has now been cut to 30.

The replacement 14 service also starts its run later in the day and finishes earlier.

Former circular passengers claim they are paying the price for the decision by First to increase the number of buses it sends to Forth Valley Royal Hospital in Larbert.

First Scotland East said this week the changes made to the services previously covered by the circular were done after an analysis of customers’ travelling patterns showed fewer passengers using services to travel to Camelon.

Operations director John Gorman said: “Passengers wishing to travel between Carron, Stenhousemuir or Larbert and Falkirk can do so by using service 6 or 7 which opertates every 20 minutes via Bainsford. On certain sections of the route there are buses every 10 minutes. Customers wishing to travel between Carron or King Street to Camelon will have to travel by two buses. Our customer services team can provide full travel advice.

“Since the changes were introduced in October the reliability of our buses has improved and we are pleased with how services are running. Of course there are occasions when not everything goes to plan, road works on Bellsdyke Road for example have caused some delays. But in such instances we work with the local authority to try to minimise the impact on our passengers.”