Local Labour MSP Colin Smyth and Scottish Labour’s Shadow Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy, Connectivity and Transport has criticised the latest move by Stagecoach to cut bus services for residents in Mid and Upper Nithsdale.

The changes by Stagecoach were reported to the latest SWESTRANs Board meeting.

The changes to the 246 Dumfries to Cumnock service will see the complete removal of the 1830 Northbound with the 2235 service axed on a Friday and Saturday. The 2030 service will now terminate in Sanquhar.

On the Southbound route the 1811 service will be removed completely with the 2329 service from Kirkconnel removed on a Friday and Saturday night. The 1945 service from Sanquhar will also be removed.

The latest cut follows moves last year to axe direct services from Dumfries to Ayr passing through Mid and Upper Nithsdale. Passengers can now only go as far as Cumnock before having to change bus to get to Ayr

Colin Smyth MSP said, “Not content with axing services from Ayr to Dumfries, Stagecoach are now eroding what’s left of the 246 service. The cuts that are being forced through by Stagecoach will have a huge impact on local communities along the 246 route.

Bus services are vital for local communities and the way in which these cuts have been made makes it clear that we need radical change to our bus services to ensure that local bus services start serve local communities.”

Colin Smyth now intends to write to the Stagecoach West Managing Director to express his concerns at the cuts to the 246 bus service.

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