Villagers breathe sigh of relief as Stagecoach's 200 Banbury to Daventry bus is reprieved - for the time being

Stagecoach buses on the 200 route will continue until the end of AugustStagecoach buses on the 200 route will continue until the end of August
Stagecoach buses on the 200 route will continue until the end of August
Residents of villages to the east of Banbury were breathing a sigh of relief this week as council bosses stepped in to save their bus service - temporarily.

The rural bus route - the 200 - linking Banbury with Daventry will continue through the summer after West Northants Council (WNC) reached a deal with its operator.

Stagecoach West announced last month that the bus service would cease on April 2 due to low passenger numbers.

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However after a public outcry and campaign to have the service maintained, WNC and Oxfordshire County Council have now jointly made arrangements with Stagecoach West to fund the service on its current timetable until August 27.

WNC will carry out a comprehensive review of bus services across West Northamptonshire, in order to determine how to support public transport across the network in future.

The 200 service runs from about 7am - 6.25pm on weekdays and between 8am - 6.25pm on Saturdays, providing a link between Daventry and Banbury and stopping at a number of villages including Chipping Warden, Wardington, Byfield, Woodford Halse, Charwelton and Badby.

Councillor Phil Larratt, Cabinet Member for Environment, Transport, Highways and Waste on West Northamptonshire Council, said: “We understand the financial pressures on bus operators, particularly during the pandemic when passenger numbers were understandably lower.

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“However bus services such as this offer a lifeline to people in our rural communities, so we are pleased to work alongside Oxfordshire County Council in order to step in and offer this support, allowing this important route to continue running during the summer.

“This will give us time to carry out a wide-ranging review of bus services right across West Northamptonshire, in order to find solutions that will offer the best possible outcomes for our communities.”