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Skip Navigation LinksMerseytravel > About Us > A Guide to Merseytravel > Consulting on Service Changes

 Consulting on Service Changes


Consulting on Service Changes

As part of the Liverpool City Region Bus Strategy, Merseytravel, working with bus operators, is carrying out a regular cycle of reviews of bus services, supported and commercial, in each district, with the aim of getting more people using the bus by creating a better bus experience.

A key part of those network reviews is the consultation process that helps develop the final network with valued input from stakeholders, bus users and the wider public.  

While these reviews have looked at the all services across each district, there are occasions where operators may look to make changes to their commercial services on a route-by-route basis, as well as any changes to individual supported routes outside of the network review process. 

As part of the Liverpool City Region Bus Alliance, Stagecoach and Arriva have recognised the value of consultation and have pledged to consult in advance on any significant changes to their commercial services, where possible.  

In the Merseyside Region, operators have committed to limit changes to four key dates, where possible, throughout the year to stabilise the network and build confidence in bus services. In advance of these dates, consultation on any proposed changes will take place to help inform operators and Merseytravel of the potential impact they will have.

From January 2020 there will be changes to bus routes in Liverpool City Centre and where many people get on and off. The changes are in response to Liverpool City Council’s £47m City Centre Connectivity Scheme. It aims to transform the city centre, making it a cleaner, greener, more attractive place for everyone, where walking and cycling are more viable options to get around. This will be achieved by improving public realm and changing how traffic moves through the city, reducing congestion and improving air quality. You can find out more here​.


Arriva X1 - Liverpool - Murdishaw

Arriva has received and examined all responses from the X1 bus service consultation held between 13/11/19 and 27/11/19.

Arriva initiated the consultation due to their intention to withdraw the service due to it not being commercially viable. The consultation held in November has given Arriva time to examine the responses and following on from the feedback they will retain the service and operate it on a new timetable as of 19th January 2020. The timetable will generally be every 40 minutes Monday – Saturday. Arriva would like to thank all participants of the consultation.

Many comments were received as part of the consultation, and they summarised below:

1.) The speed and directness of the service makes the X1 more attractive vs the alternatives

2.) There is a core of customers who use the service to commute to work

3.) The service could be diverted to other areas to improve its performance.

4.) The X1 is often busy - why are we consulting on its withdrawal.

The responses to these comments are below.

1.) Arriva will continue operating the service under a new timetable as of 19th January 2020. The timetable will generally be every 40 minutes Monday – Saturday and will retain the fast, direct link between Liverpool and Runcorn. 2.) We have retained the service and have maintained the same numbers of arrivals into Liverpool between 8am-9am and the same number departures from Liverpool between 5pm-6.15pm to cater to the commuter traffic.

3.) We have considered the various options to divert the service, but due to the amount of feedback which appreciated the current service's directness and speed we have not diverted the service from its current route.

4.) Whilst the service can be busy the fares are low considering the length of time customers spend on the service and there is limited opportunity to pick up additional customers on route due to its express nature. As a part of the review of the service we will be looking to review the fare structure in January.

Arriva 30 - St Helens to Chain Lane

s notified by Arriva that they intended to withdraw their commercially operated 30 Sunday daytime service.

Sunday daytime journeys are operated commercially by Arriva and the evening journeys are operated by Huyton Travel under contract to Merseytravel. In order to understand the impact that the withdrawal of the daytime journeys would have a consultation process was undertaken.

Merseytravel and Arriva held a consultation on the proposed withdrawal from Wednesday 16th October 2019 to Wednesday 30th October 2019 to give the public the opportunity to comment about how they use the service and/or may be affected by this change.

The comments showed there is a need for a Sunday daytime service even at a reduced frequency and that the services are essential for residents in the area.

The consultation regarding the future of Arriva’s 30 service on a Sunday (St Helens – Laffak) generated a limited response. Arriva considered this feedback but unfortunately do not believe this action would lead to a viable service in the future. The last day of operation will be Sunday 12th January 2020. However using existing resource available to us from 19th January 2020 Merseytravel will introduce an hourly service on route 30. The current evening provision will remain unchanged.The evening frequency will be higher than the daytime frequency because the buses used to operate this contract are required to operate service 37 of a Sunday daytime.The new timetable information booklet will be available soon on this website.​

Warrington Own Buses 22
Network Warrington are looking to simplify service 22 in two locations as a result of reliability issues and passenger feedback. This is due to repeated issues with parked cars on Elizabeth Road causing buses to get stuck, as a result passengers have become uncertain about whether or not the bus will be able to make it around Elizabeth Drive. Network Warrington  are simplifying the route to serve the stops on Church Road (Balharry Avenue) and Piele Road (Birch Road). In Ashton-in-Makerfield Network Warrington propose to omit the first loop of Gerard Street meaning buses arriving from Garswood would drop off at Ashton Town Centre (Stop A) & the first stop in Princess Road. Passengers can remain on the bus and travel round the Princess Road loop to alight at the Gerard Street stop (Ashton Town Centre stop D).
Both of these changes will simplify the route and improve punctuality.
The consultation feedback has been considered and is available here.

Stagecoach X5 Widnes - Liverpool
Stagecoach have conducted a further consideration of the feedback received on this service and the outcome is below 

Following the consultation regarding the future of service X5 Liverpool - Widnes, Stagecoach has reluctantly taken the decision to withdraw the service. The last day of operation will be Saturday 23rd November 2019.

The results of the consultation demonstrated that existing customers appreciated the fast journey times and limited stop nature of the service. They also demonstrated that there was a clear appreciation of new and improved links to the Lunts Heat and Barrow's Green areas of Widnes. It was also clear that a number of X5 customers had previously used the train, or the car; but the limited-stop nature of the service, combined with comparatively low fares had attracted them to use the bus.

We did explore other potential options to try and continue to provide a link to Widnes, but none of these were commercially viable, or satisfied the demand for fast, limited-stop journeys into Liverpool. As we cannot see a commercially viable future for this bus link, we have therefore been left with no option but to cancel the service.​

​Bus Consultations - Previous Outcomes

A number of bus consultations have already taken place accross the network. The response and outcomes to these completed consultations can be seen below.