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Changes to bus services in Frome

There are changes to services for bus users in Frome following a First  consultation. 

The main changes that will affect the Frome service includes the withdrawal of return fares, set priced single fair options, a new ‘West of England’ unlimited travel ticket for £7 on selected buses, new ‘West of England Plus’ unlimited travel ticket that covers all buses in the region for £10 and a new 50% discount for children on all services.

The change in service started from Sunday 6th July and follows a six-week public consultation across the West of England area, where First asked bus users and non-users what they wanted to see from their local service. Almost 2,000 people took part, filling in consultation questionnaires and sharing their feedback. The data has since been analysed, with a new fare structure designed as a result.

The new flat-fare single tickets will cost either £1.50, £2.50, £3.50, £4.50 or £5.50 with no return fare options.

Local bus campaigner, Tracey Harding is unhappy with some of the changes. She said, “The return price around Frome used to be £1.80, it is now £1.50 single so if you want to make a return journey it will now cost £3.00. The price of the return ticket to Trowbridge used to be £4.80, it is now £3.50 single. The return price to Bath used to be £6.60, it is now £5.50 single. First also have an all day ticket that can be used on any bus for multiple journeys which is excellent value at just £7.00.

“For those wishing to make a return journey, then their prices are not fairer for all as they advertise.”

Paul Matthews, managing director for First said, “We have worked hard to ensure that as many people as possible benefit from the changes we are making, but accept that there will be a small number of people who may see their fares increase. This is especially so where flat fares are introduced as the nature of the beast is that a flat fare has to be set at an average point. Flat fares are however incredibly easy to understand.”

For more information about First West of England in general, or to view current ticket information alongside timetables visit www.firstgroup.com/westofengland.