Further Bus Timetable Changes – and Consultation

By bellmannews / July 1, 2023
photo of bus stop sign

The removal of their Stonehaven to Laurencekirk service is one change noted in the latest release from Stagecoach Bluebird

  • Customers invited to review plans and provide comments on the proposed network.
  • Proposals reflect changes to customer demand following the pandemic.
  • Revised timetables offer faster journeys on key journeys such as Peterhead-Fraserburgh and Ellon-Aberdeen.
  • Some services will no longer be operated by Stagecoach following changes to Aberdeenshire Council contracts.

Stagecoach Bluebird invites customers to give feedback on proposed changes to timetables for services in Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire.

For a number of years, public feedback received during consultation has shaped the local bus network, offering better connections for the local communities to the places that matter most to them.

The proposals come following an extensive review of the network and travel patterns. Bus services are vital for connecting communities to jobs, education and leisure opportunities. The proposed changes aim to reflect the level of customer demand in different areas and ensure that the network can operate sustainably.

A consultation has already begun for services on the Aberdeen-Portlethen-Stonehaven corridor. An encouraging number of responses have already been received. The bus operator is now in a position to confirm proposals for more of its corridors across the region, such as Deeside, Buchan and Inverurie.

The proposals are the result of careful analysis of customer journey patterns and service performance, with adjustments made to improve punctuality and reliability. Many of the proposed revisions have been developed with customer and staff feedback, whilst others follow on from a recent tendering exercise by Aberdeenshire Council, who provide financial support for a number of bus services across the region.

Stagecoach plans to introduce the new timetables in August 2023, once feedback from customers has been gathered and final adjustments have been made.

Daniel Laird, Commercial Director for Stagecoach Bluebird said: “We invite customers to give their feedback about our planned revisions to our network. Everything we have planned is to best use our fleet of buses to meet the travel habits in the area as well as improving the punctuality of the services. We continue to invest in our people and in our fleet so that we can deliver improved services to our customers.”

Feedback can be submitted via email to bluebird.consultations@stagecoach.com before Thursday 6th July.

Full details of the proposed changes, including draft timetables can be found here:

https://www.stagecoachbus.com/service-updates/serviceupdatesarticle?SituationId=ID-30/06/2023-11:40:13:227

Deeside

Service 201 (Aberdeen-Banchory-Ballater-Braemar)

This service will be revised to operate hourly between Aberdeen and Ballater, and up to every 30 minutes between Aberdeen and Banchory.

The route will be revised within Banchory, with Raemoir Road mainly served by the shorter journeys to Banchory only. This will reduce the journey time for customers travelling towards Ballater.

Buses between Ballater and Braemar will continue to operate every 2 hours; however, on weekdays and Saturdays they will operate as a shuttle service (202), connecting to Aberdeen buses at Ballater Golf Road. Customers will be able to connect between buses at Ballater for no additional cost, and advertised connections will be guaranteed.

On Sundays, journeys will continue towards Braemar every 2 hours. Following the recent decision by Aberdeenshire Council to withdraw funding for Braemar services on Sundays, Stagecoach is pleased to confirm that these journeys will operate seasonally on a commercial basis until Sunday 29th October, returning in April 2024.

Regrettably, all journeys serving Lumphanan and Tarland and most journeys serving Torphins will be withdrawn. Unfortunately, passenger numbers on these sections are not sufficient to maintain the current level of service.

The timetable has been revised using feedback from customers and staff, as well as data from our tracking system, to provide a more consistent service for customers.

Service 205 (Banchory Town Service)

Due to low passenger numbers, this service will be withdrawn. Customers will still be able to travel throughout Banchory on service 201.

Buchan

X60/X63/61 Aberdeen-Ellon/Newburgh-Peterhead

Timetables have been revised to improve service punctuality.

On Sundays, services X60 and X63 will be replaced by service 61, operating consistently throughout the day.

X67/X68 Aberdeen-Ellon-Mintlaw-Fraserburgh

Timetables have been revised to improve service punctuality.

On weekdays, services between Aberdeen and Fraserburgh will be revised to operate hourly (as X68) between the morning and evening peak periods. Service X67 will operate between Aberdeen and Ellon during this period. Frequency of services at the busiest commuting times is not affected.

Service X69/69/69B Peterhead-Fraserburgh

In response to customer feedback, most weekday journeys will operate as faster service X69, directly via the A90 and Lonmay. This will provide a quicker journey for the majority of customers. Service X69 will not divert from the A90 at Crimond and St Fergus, serving the main road bus stops instead.

The recently introduced additional journeys to NESCOL Fraserburgh Campus will be maintained on service X69.

Connections between St Combs and Fraserburgh will be maintained on service 69, with some changes to journeys.

Sunday services will continue to operate as service 69/69B.

Service 66 Peterhead-Mintlaw-Stuartfield/Maud

Timetables have been revised to improve service punctuality.

Service 66A journeys via Torterston will no longer operate due to very low passenger numbers. This will improve journey times for the majority of customers.

Following customer feedback, additional weekday journeys have been added to provide a service from Mintlaw Academy towards Peterhead in the afternoons.

Service X65 Aberdeen-Balmedie-Ellon (replaces services 50 and 53)

This new service will provide a fast connection between Aberdeen, Balmedie, Foveran and the centre of Ellon. Connections are particularly improved for customers in Foveran and Balmedie.

Journeys on service 53A (Balmedie-Ellon Academy) will be retained on service X65.

This new route replaces services 50 and 53 (see below)

Service 81 Peterhead-Boddam

The 0830 journey from Peterhead to Boddam will now operate at 0800.

Service 49 Ellon-Oldmeldrum-Inverurie

This service will no longer be operated by Stagecoach following changes to Aberdeenshire Council contracts.

Service 50 Aberdeen-Newburgh-Ellon

This service will no longer be operated by Stagecoach following changes to Aberdeenshire Council contracts. The route will be partially replaced by new service X65.

Service 52 Ellon Town Service

This service will no longer be operated by Stagecoach following changes to Aberdeenshire Council contracts.

Service 53 Aberdeen-Balmedie-Ellon

This service will no longer be operated by Stagecoach following changes to Aberdeenshire Council contracts. The route will be partially replaced by new service X65.

Service 54 Ellon Town Service

This service will no longer be operated by Stagecoach following changes to Aberdeenshire Council contracts.

Service 55 Ellon-Modley Avenue

This service will no longer be operated by Stagecoach following changes to Aberdeenshire Council contracts.

Service 248 New Byth-Inverurie

This service will no longer be operated by Stagecoach following changes to Aberdeenshire Council contracts.

Service 292 Ellon-Methlick

Unfortunately, this service will be withdrawn due to very low passenger numbers.

Service 452 Fraserburgh-Methlick-Inverurie

This service will no longer be operated by Stagecoach following changes to Aberdeenshire Council contracts.

West Aberdeenshire

Service 9 Aberdeen-Blackburn-Inverurie

Revised timetable with no changes to service frequency

Service 10/10A/10B Aberdeen – Elgin – Inverness

Revised simplified daytime timetable running hourly throughout the daytime between Inverness, Elgin and Aberdeen.  Revised evening timetable with the last journey from Aberdeen at 2300 Monday to Saturday operating as Service 10B through to Elgin.

Service 35/X35 Aberdeen – Banff – Elgin – Inverness

Revised timetable with the Service extending through to Inverness Monday to Saturday.  Revised stopping arrangements within Aberdeen City Boundary.  New Service X35 that will operate a limited stop Service between Aberdeen and Banff.  Within Aberdeen Service X35  will operate a revised route within the City between ARI and the City Centre and will serve Union Terrace.

Service 35/X35 will combine to offer a Service upto every 30 minutes during the daytime between Banff and Aberdeen.

The last Service leaving Aberdeen Monday to Sunday will now be at 2245.

On Sundays there will be a slight reduction in frequency between Banff and Aberdeen

Service 37 Inverurie-Kintore

Revised timetable with no changes to service frequency, improving connections with services 9 and 10.

Service X20 Aberdeen-Kemnay-Alford

Additional journeys will be added on schooldays; 0825 Kemnay to Aberdeen and 1415 Aberdeen to Kemnay. This will provide an improved frequency at busy times.

Service 41 Insch-Inverurie

Changes to timetable.

Service 422 Insch-Alford

Changes to timetable.

Service 219 Strathdon-Alford Academy

This service will no longer be operated by Stagecoach following changes to Aberdeenshire Council contracts.

Aberdeen City

Service 4 Aberdeen-Kingswells P&R-Countesswells

Minor changes on weekdays to allow school pupils to travel from Countesswells to Hazlehead Academy, in response to customer requests.

Stonehaven/Newtonhill/Portlethen

We continue to invite comments on our proposals for this corridor, details of which can be found here:

https://www.stagecoachbus.com/service-updates/serviceupdatesarticle?SituationId=ID-20/06/2023-11:14:18:918

In addition, the following change is proposed:

Service 26 Stonehaven-Laurencekirk

This service will no longer be operated by Stagecoach following changes to Aberdeenshire Council contracts.

How to Give Feedback:

Call: 0345 241 8000

You can reach us between 8:00 and 18:00 from Monday to Friday and between 09:00 and 17:00 Saturday and Sunday.

Calls are charged at geographic rates (the same as 01/02 numbers) and are included in call packages from both landlines and mobiles.

Email: bluebird.consultations@stagecoach.com (before Thursday 6th July).