Bus stops are just the ticket for passengers

Picture: CUMBERNAULD Westfield Drive bus stops. Arguments over bus provision to st helens and holy cross primaries after school closure.
Picture: CUMBERNAULD Westfield Drive bus stops. Arguments over bus provision to st helens and holy cross primaries after school closure.

A bus company, the local authority and Strathclyde Partnership for Transport have acted to resolve a problem with bus stops in Lesmahagow and Coalburn.

Bus drivers were adhering to an “official stops only” policy, which, it was claimed, left a stretch of about three miles in which passengers could not get off the bus.

Whitelaw’s buses were no longer stopping at spots regarded as unofficial bus stops for decades.

And one stretch, from the top of Lesmahagow right down to Dunn Crescent in Coalburn, had four unofficial stops.

Bypassing those meant that staff at the Auchlochan retirement village could 
no longer get off the bus nearby.

“I have been inundated by local residents showing their dismay that the bus no longer stops at all these stops,” said local councillor George Greenshields, who raised it with the council.

However, all those involved have moved quickly to sort the problem, and from Tuesday (December 1) stops were being made again.

“SPT is working closely with Whitelaw’s Coaches and South Lanarkshire Council to solve the problem and hopefully we will see bus stop infrastructure in place as soon as possible,” said a spokesman for the Transport Partnership.

This would mean new official bus stops where it was safe to have them.

And Whitelaw’s explained: “Following a passenger complaint about a driver stopping outwith a registered bus stop, drivers were reminded that, as per all service registrations, they were required to only stop at registered bus stops.

“This identified a small number of unofficial stops in the Coalburn area.

“There is a strict process that must be completed to ascertain if a bus stop can be erected in any given place, which includes a series of safety checks.

“Bus operators have no control over the positioning or installation of bus stops,” the company added.

“On identifying these areas where additional stops are desired, Whitelaw’s sent an urgent request to SPT and in the interest of the travelling public in the area, SPT acted swiftly and, as of December 1, four new registered stops have been made ‘live’ in the area and a further stop will be in the near future.”