Orkney’s MSP Liam McArthur met senior representatives of Stagecoach today ahead of the latest public feedback session over the next two days.
Mr McArthur took the opportunity to highlight a range of issues, including the need to improve connections with local ferry services, demands for more low-floored, accessible buses and clearer timetable information for the travelling public.
Commenting after the meeting, Mr McArthur said:
“Last year, Stagecoach undertook feedback sessions in Orkney amid widespread public anger about high profile failures in the service provided by the company. Twelve months on and it is fair to say that Stagecoach has made progress in addressing some of those concerns, but there is still room for improvement.
“One area where progress is needed is in making connections between bus and ferry services easier and more reliable. This is regularly highlighted as a problem by constituents as well as visitors to Orkney. Going forward, we need to see services that connect, simplified ticketing arrangements and better promotion of what is on offer.
“Another regular complaint locally is the lack of low-floored buses on some routes at certain times of the day. By next year all buses will need to be fully accessible, whether or not they are low-floored, but I encouraged Stagecoach to continue updating their local fleet as quickly as possible.
“Given the importance of bus services to many within the local community, I welcome the fact that Stagecoach is undertaking this latest round of feedback sessions. They will undoubtedly be given plenty of food for thought. Going forward, I will certainly do all I can to make sure they respond positively to the concerns and suggestions that are made.