Six Leeds services on leaked First Bus list naming routes that could be axed - including one serving St James’ Hospital

Six Leeds bus services, including routes serving St James’ Hospital, Morley and Bramley, could be axed in April by the operator First.

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The number 87, 64, 47,48, 9 and 9A services might all be permanently withdrawn by the company, according to leaked plans seen by the Local Democracy Reporting Service. A further seven West Yorkshire services, including routes serving Pudsey, Armley, Halifax and Huddersfield, are at risk of having their frequencies slashed.

The planned changes have not been confirmed, but they are likely to take effect from April 2 if they do go ahead. The move would also be in spite of the Department of Transport (DfT) extending emergency funding for bus operators from the end of March until June.

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One Leeds councillor, whose residents would be affected by the proposed changes, said “whole communities are at risk of being cut off” from repeated cuts. They said: “It’s completely taking away people’s basic routines around commuting and leisure, with very little warning and no indication of whether or not they’re going to replaced or reconfigured in the future. First should be honest, communicate with people and give them a meaningful heads-up if passengers are going to have to change their whole commute.”

Services in Leeds are among those on a leaked First Bus list that sets out routes which could be axed. Picture: James HardistyServices in Leeds are among those on a leaked First Bus list that sets out routes which could be axed. Picture: James Hardisty
Services in Leeds are among those on a leaked First Bus list that sets out routes which could be axed. Picture: James Hardisty

Around 30 more First services were believed to be at risk of changes or withdrawal had the extra DfT funding not been announced, although questions remain about their long-term futures after June. It is understood no other local bus operators, including Arriva, are planning to make any cuts in the immediate future. Arriva themselves announced a raft of service withdrawals in the autumn which have already taken effect.

First did not comment when repeatedly approached for comment last week. On Monday, the company said on Twitter it was “continuing to work closely with the West Yorkshire Combined Authority to finalise details”, ahead of a March 3 deadline for announcing the changes.

What the leaked list says

Services which could be withdrawn:

9 – White Rose Centre-Pudsey-Farsley-Horsforth

9A – Seacroft-Colton-Swillington-Rothwell-Middleton-White Rose Centre-Pudsey-Farsley-Horsforth

47 – Leeds-Hunslet-Middleton-Morley-White Rose Centre

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48 – Wigton Moor-Moortown-Chapeltown-Leeds-Hunslet-Middleton-Morley-White Rose Centre

64 – Leeds-Cross Gates-Barwick-in-Elmet-Aberford

87 – St James’ Hospital-East End Park-Hunslet-Holbeck-Armley-Bramley

Services which could have their frequency cut:

14 – Pudsey-Armley-Leeds-Logic Business Park

X11 – Leeds-Armley-Pudsey

508 – Halifax-Shelf-Thornbury-Leeds

181 – Huddersfield-Cowlersley-Slaithwaite-Wilberlee

183 – Huddersfield-Cowlersley-Slaithwaite-Wilberlee-Marsden

184 – Huddersfield-Cowlersley-Slaithwaite-Wilberlee-Marsden-Lees-Oldham

185 – Huddersfield-Cowlersley-Slaithwaite-Wilberlee-Marsden