Leeds councillors call for more late night bus services in city

Councillors said they want to see more late night services.
Councillors said they want to see more late night services.

Councillors have urged the county’s transport authority to improve late night bus and rail services linking Leeds city centre to the suburbs and surrounding towns.

Members of Leeds City Council’s Licensing Committee highlighted the issue as one which was creating problems for the night-time economy and could potentially hold Leeds back as a destination.

There are 100,000 people plus, so there’s a demand there.

John Ebo, head of Leeds city centre management

John Ebo, the head of city centre management, told them: “The view from operators has been in the past that when they’ve put on [late services], there hasn’t been much demand.

“Our view is until you run it and run it for some time, until people become familiar with it, they’re not going to use it.”

He said the city centre’s night-time economy attracted more than 100,000 people on Friday and Saturday nights.

“There’s a demand there but we have to encourage West Yorkshire Combined Authority to encourage operators to carry out a trial,” he added.

But Tom Gifford, from the authority, said that some improvements had already been made.

He highlighted the increase in late bus services for the Leeds-Dewsbury corridor and connecting the city with Wakefield, as well as the late 36 service linking the city centre, parts of north Leeds and Harrogate on Saturdays.

“We’re also talking with rail operators and we’ve got later services to Dewsbury and York, so there are some improvements,” he said.

He added that park and ride operating hours were being extended as well.