TWO new bus services in Southend are due to be launched next month.

The Number 6 bus, operated by Rochford-based Stephensons, will run hourly on a Sunday from Garon Park to the town centre via Hamstel Road and Southchurch Road. There is currently no service on a Sunday for the area.

Arriva also plans to start a new Number 17 service from the town centre to Tesco, in Prince Avenue, via the Cliffs Pavilion and Hamlet Court Road.

The service will run every hour on a Thursday for a six-month period to gauge the demand.

Both of these services are due to start in mid-May.

Anna Waite, Southend councillor responsible for transport, said: "Many residents of St Luke's and Southchurch wards feel very cut off on Sundays and this will be a really great help to them.

"I am really pleased Stephensons have decided to run this Sunday service.

"It's great to see our investment being recognised and responded to by the bus operators."

Mrs Waite said she was pleased at how the council and bus operators had worked together.

She said: "We have invested heavily in bus infrastructure over recent years and it is now paying off.

"Working together has to be the way forward to improve services and facilities."