Matlock passengers stranded as bus company cuts Derby and Buxton services

Matlock is set to lose vital transport connections next month after one of the town’s bus operators announced drastic cuts to its services.

By Ed Dingwall
Sunday, 26th June 2022, 3:56 pm
Updated Sunday, 26th June 2022, 3:57 pm

High Peak Buses will run just one daily Trans Peak service between Matlock to Matlock Bath, Belper and Derby, and reduce links to Buxton when new timetables come into effect on Sunday, July 10.

Nikos Ntalampiras, operations manager for High Peak Buses, said: “We monitor our local bus service network at regular intervals and during recent monitoring we have become aware that patronage numbers on a number of local bus services has declined to a level where the service could no longer be sustained on a commercial basis.”

Instead, passengers will have to travel by rail to Derby or via the Sixes bus operated by Trent Barton, also owned by High Peak parent company Wellglade.

Matlock Bus Station will be quieter when Trans Peak services are cut from July 10.

Alison Englefield was one of many to highlight flaws in the plan, saying: “This is short sighted and annoying. I now have no buses without a very long walk, and I have mobility issues and no car. All of us along the A6 after Cromford up to Belper are stuffed.”

Courtney Bullen said: “What about the people who have to commute past Matlock from Buxton? The times don’t match up with the Sixes making it a 45 minute wait in Bakewell in the morning.”

Asked if the changes to the route could have been coordinated with rail schedules at Matlock, a company spokesperson said: “We don’t interwork with train times.”

Derby resident Adrian Healey said: “I guess many will just get the car out instead, never to return to the bus again.”

The Trans Peak service receives no public subsidy – and the prospects of any financial lifeline appear slim.

In April, the Government allocated Derbyshire County Council less than half of the requested funding for its bus service improvement plan – having cut a promise of £3billion nationwide to £1.4b.

At the time, Ed Fordham, leader of the county council’s Liberal Democrat Group, warned: “More and more villages will be inaccessible on public transport and options will be limited to local people.

“This is a real example where the underfunding of local government will lead directly to poorer services across Derbyshire.”

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