Residents say bus figures are flawed

FIGURES used to justify cuts to bus services are flawed, says a residents’ group.

The 7 and 8 routes from Southend to Hockley and Rayleigh are being cut by operator Arriva, from six per hour to just two, from February 9.

Arriva has said because of low customer numbers on the two routes, it is not commercially viable to keep all six buses every hour.

According to Essex Country Council, Arriva estimate only 45 passengers per day use the Number 7 bus in the Greensward Lane area.

In a recent letter, Norman Hume, county councillor for transport, said these low passenger numbers would result in too high a subsidy for the county council to support the route’s continued level of service.

But the Hockley Res- idents’ Association has done its own one-day survey which, it claims, shows about 12 times that number are using the buses. They are urging Arriva to review their passenger figures and restore the services.

Brian Guyett, chairman of Hockley Residents’ Association, said: “We accept a one-day survey cannot be a wholly accurate overall average, but it is a lot more realistic than Arriva’s figure.

“Volumes are not high and some cuts are appropriate. However, Arriva’s vast under-estimate of the passenger numbers suggests its calculations are fundamentally flawed and we ask them to urgently look again at the figures.”

Carried out at Station Approach, in Hockley, the survey showed an average of five people using each No 7 bus in Greensward Lane between 8am and 6pm.

A further survey was carried out by David Fryer-Kelsey, chairman of the Hockley Parish Plan Group, who, between 10am and noon one weekday in Greensward Lane, counted 13 Number 7 buses carrying 78 passengers.

Arriva spokesman Malcolm Spalding said he was not able to comment on the association’s survey or the figures attributed to Arriva by the county council.

Meanwhile, Rayleigh MP Mark Francois has also said he is opposed to cuts in the service.

Comments (3)

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11:51pm Mon 2 Feb 09

ericslayer says...

what happens when all the school children go to school and come home again on the bus, I was on a single decker No.7 going to Southend in Prittlewell Chase the other day when they were going home and they were all standing doubled up the whole length of the bus with all their bags etc and I had to climb over everything to get out.

Surely at the busy times including school leaving /arriving times they could put on more than just one No.7 and No.8 an hour. What happens when the bus is full and passengers have to wait for the next bus.

Are they suggesting cutting the present four No.7 and two No.8 services an hour to just one of each as this is not made very clear in the story. I suggest that the people making the decisions travel on the bus routes at the busy times and see for themselves.
what happens when all the school children go to school and come home again on the bus, I was on a single decker No.7 going to Southend in Prittlewell Chase the other day when they were going home and they were all standing doubled up the whole length of the bus with all their bags etc and I had to climb over everything to get out. Surely at the busy times including school leaving /arriving times they could put on more than just one No.7 and No.8 an hour. What happens when the bus is full and passengers have to wait for the next bus. Are they suggesting cutting the present four No.7 and two No.8 services an hour to just one of each as this is not made very clear in the story. I suggest that the people making the decisions travel on the bus routes at the busy times and see for themselves. ericslayer

5:19pm Mon 3 Jan 11

lemon demon says...

maybe if arriva stopped using double-deckers on these routes they wouldn't need to cut the service.
maybe if arriva stopped using double-deckers on these routes they wouldn't need to cut the service. lemon demon

12:22pm Fri 19 Apr 13

max zorin says...

arriva should invest in new single deckers for 7s and 8s, then maybe more people would use them.
arriva should invest in new single deckers for 7s and 8s, then maybe more people would use them. max zorin
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