The battle to save Pateley Bridge’s vital Sunday bus service has been won.
A major campaign launched last month by Nidderdale Chamber of Trade, Nidderdale Plus and the Dales and District Bus Company means Nidderdale’s no24 service will not be axed now for commercial reasons and will run in the winter months afterall.
After a successful meeting yesterday, Wednesday, with The Harrogate Bus Company, DalesBus and new sponsors Harrogate Spring Water, a delighted chairman of Nidderdale Chamber of Trade, Keith Tordoff paid tribute to everyone in the Dales who had made the campaign victorious.
He said: “We had to raise £4,000 towards the cost of retaning a bus service in the winter and people responded magnificently.
“The Chamber of Trade is absolutely delighted and we are very grateful to the Nidderdale Herald for hugely supporting the campaign.”
The new sponsorship deal with a high-profile firm known for its community support means the Pateley-Harrogate service will continue for at least two more years.
Alex Hornby, chief executive of The Harrogate Bus Company (Transdev), said: “We have always been keen to find a way to bring security and stability to our important route 24 through Nidderdale, and promised we would work with the community to identify ways to bring about improvements.
James Cain OBE, chief executive of Harrogate Water Brands said: “We are delighted to support a local campaign that will secure a vital community transport link. We look forward to exploring how we can further support this service for both the local community and this beautiful part of Yorkshire.”
Chamber of Trade chairman Keith Tordoff said saving the bus service would give a boost the whole community, as well as local businesses, commuters and tourists.
He said: “There were exiting ideas at the meeting to improve the service and make it more popular.
“For example, there will be changes to the timetable so that it fits services from Leeds and Bradford.
"We're very hopeful this is just the start of the story not just a one-off.
"Everyone at the meeting could see the benefit of supporting this wonderful bus service in Nidderdale."
Alex Hornby, chief executive of The Harrogate Bus Company, said: “This new, groundbreaking partnership with Harrogate Water, brought about through our relationship and ongoing consultation with Nidderdale Chamber of Trade and DalesBus, will secure the winter Sunday service and will neatly lead the way into exciting improvements to the route.”
Paul Chattwood, commercial director of Dales & Bowland Community Interest Company, said: “We are keen to help develop the service as part of the popular DalesBus network.”