The Wensleydale Transport Action Group brings together users, service providers and other stakeholders to improve public transport in the Wensleydale area, including Bedale, Leyburn, Aysgarth and Hawes.
To get in touch please email us.
Service 73 (Northallerton - Bedale)
Minor timetable changes will be made from 27th March 2017, with some peak-time journeys from Northallerton running slightly earlier - click here for the new timetable.
Little White Bus - Richmondshire Rover
An improved service will be introduced from 28th November 2016, providing new links to Barnard Castle, Bedale and Ripon - click here for details.
The Saturday service between Bedale and Leyburn will also be revised from the same date - click here for details.
Wensleydale Flyer Saved
The Wensleydale Flyer Sunday bus has been saved by a local crowd-funding campaign and funding from Yorkshire-based mobility specialist Acorn Stairlifts.
A crowdfunding website set up by Low Mill Guest House in Bainbridge in support of the Wensleydale Flyer managed to hit its £6,500 target, demonstrating the value which people put on the service. This support has enabled the Wensleydale Flyer to keep running through until the start of the Acorn funding, and will also help provide a connecting bus between Hawes and Garsdale Station, and give the service a financial safety net for the future.
Acorn has pledged cash to keep Wensleydale Flyer service 856 running throughout the whole of 2017. Without the funding the year-round service was facing an uncertain future and likely to cease operating by Easter next year.
For more about Acorn Stairlifts and its award-winning products, visit www.acornstairlifts.co.uk
The Dales & Bowland CIC is still fundraising to enable the continuation of the DalesBus Sunday network in Summer 2017, and would welcome support from other local or national businesses. To find out more about how you might be able to help support this valuable service please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
The Friends of DalesBus also welcome online donations to their Bus Operating Fund, which helps fund DalesBus services.
Wensleydale Voyager Service 156 Changes
Minor changes will be made to the Wensleydale Voyager timetable from 7th November 2016. Some journeys will no longer call at Preston-under-Scar village centre unless requested in advance, and the 0950 journey from Leyburn to Hawes will now make a scheduled stop at Thoralby at 1015. The revised timetable can be downloaded here.
The Little White Bus Richmondshire Rover service between Leyburn and Bedale will also operate a revised timetable on Saturdays from 12th November 2016 - please contact Little White Bus for details.
Fund-raising Campaign for Wensleydale Flyer
A fund-raising campaign has been launched by local residents to save Wensleydale Flyer bus service 856 for the winter months.
This service takes in the remote Wensleydale town of Hawes and travels up and down Dale taking passengers to hospitals, visit family or shopping. It helps prevent the elderly becoming isolated in their homes, and allows people to visit the Yorkshire Dales National Park – enjoying the scenery, improving their wellbeing and supporting local businesses.
This bus service is in critical need of financial assistance – otherwise it will stop running at the end of October when the current one-off funding kindly provided by local businesses runs out.
The loss of this service would be devastating for people who can only get to their destination on this bus. It’s the only bus running on Sundays and Bank Holidays anywhere between Northallerton, Bedale, Leyburn, Aysgarth, Bainbridge and Hawes.
£6,000 will keep the service running until next Easter, giving more time to try to secure more sustainable long-term funding.
Donations are welcomed at the Just Giving webpage. If you’d like to make a larger donation (over £250) with Gift Aid, or are a business that would like to discuss sponsoring the service the campaign would love to hear from you – please email email@example.com
All donations will be passed to the Yorkshire Dales Society, a registered charity, whose not-for-profit subsidiary company the Dales & Bowland Community Interest Company manages most of the Sunday DalesBus network, including the Wensleydale Flyer, and the Northern Dalesman bus which recently featured on BBC4’s All Aboard! The Country Bus programme. If insufficient money is raised to keep the service running until at least the end of the year donations will be used to support other public bus services in the Yorkshire Dales area.
The Friends of DalesBus are also continuing to raise funds to support DalesBus through their Bus Operating Fund.
Bus Service Changes from 5th September 2016
From 5th September 2016 North Yorkshire County Council will amend the timings of service 155 between Leyburn and Bedale. Click here for the new timetable (PDF file).
An updated version of the Wensleydale Voyager timetable showing the new connections can be downloaded here (PDF file).
Bus Service Changes from 11th April 2016
From 11th April 2016 Little White Bus will introduce a new Richmondshire Rover service between Leyburn and Bedale, operating on Mondays to Saturdays, supplementing North Yorkshire County Council service 155. Click here for details (PDF file).
From 11th April 2016 Little White Bus will also introduce a new Richmondshire Rover service between Northallerton, Catterick and Richmond, operating on Mondays to Saturdays. Click here for details (PDF file).
Research highlights importance of rural bus services
New research conducted by Andrew Turnbull, a Geography with Transport Planning degree student at the University of Leeds, in conjunction with the Dales & Bowland Community Interest Company has highlighted the importance of bus services to the local economy and residents of the Dales. Surveys were undertaken in November 2015 on the Sunday 856 Wensleydale Flyer bus from Northallerton to Hawes via Bedale and Leyburn. This service was reprieved for the winter with new funding from Richmondshire District Council, Leyburn Town Council and Hawes & High Abbotside Parish Council but like many services across the Dales will be withdrawn in April unless new funding sources are found. Other services expected to be withdrawn in the spring include the Saturday X75 between Skipton and Harrogate and Monday to Saturday buses between Ilkley and Grassington via Bolton Abbey together with Saturday buses between Leyburn and Bedale. Other routes will face reductions in frequency and some will be reliant upon volunteer minibus drivers.
The survey discovered that 71% of passengers were local residents dispelling the myth that Sunday services are only for tourists, with 40% of these coming from single person households of which 55% do not own a car. Even in multi-person households which own a car, 58% of the bus passengers surveyed did not have access to this car; many of these are younger people who cannot rely on “Mum’s Taxi” for their entire life! 26% of respondents were young people who receive few travel concessions on buses.
The survey found that the average expenditure in local shops and businesses was £17.29 per passenger far exceeding the subsidy of the bus journey which is £2.03 per single trip. 38% of journeys made were for employment, shopping, medical appointments and visiting friends and relatives. It is projected that after removing the 23% of passengers who said that they would have travelled by car if the bus was not running, the passengers on this service would contribute over £46,000 to the local economy over the course of the year, based upon Turnbull’s data. 93% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that the continuation of this bus service is important with comments including “this excellent service fits in with my hours of work” and “it’s a lifeline”. The survey was part of a wider research project that will be reported in March.
The plight of rural bus services was investigated by Tom Heap in the BBC 1 Countryfile television programme on January 10th with case studies across the Dales including the DalesBus services managed by the Dales & Bowland Community Interest Company which faces a £45,000 shortfall in 2016-17. This means that buses in Upper Nidderdale are likely to run on only one Sunday per month and the summer season will be much shorter than in previous years. The shortfall is exacerbated by the low reimbursement levels from North Yorkshire County Council for carrying concessionary pass holders whilst some DalesBus services were deemed by the Council to be outside of the Concessionary Pass Scheme in 2015 causing confusion for both bus drivers and passengers. Dales & Bowland CIC is currently appealing to local businesses and organisations to support the DalesBus network.