Pensioners in Dundee have been left disappointed by new bus routes which have taken a vital service out of their area.
Betty Squires, 78, who lives in Barnes Avenue, was a regular customer on the number 23 bus before it stopped arriving on her street.
Operator Xplore Dundee said the service had been changed due to issues with parked cars on the street.
But Betty and her neighbours, including friend Pat Boylan, have been left confused as drivers continue to arrive on Barnes Avenue despite the change – with Xplore admitting to the pair that its drivers had made “mistakes” when turning onto their streets.
‘I can’t afford to keep taking taxis’
“I have no idea what’s going on. Some days I’ve been able to get the bus and other days it doesn’t come,” she said.
“One day last week I had a doctor’s appointment so stood and waited for the bus but it never arrived. I ended up having to call for a taxi which I really can’t afford.
“I was told that the number 23 should not have been coming along Barnes Avenue since the service resumed in February – and that the drivers had made a mistake to carry on running there.
“They had taken Barnes Avenue out of the route because of access difficulties caused by parked cars.
“I said that the problem with parked cars was worse in Woodside – and the bus was still running there.”
‘No buses arrive’
The changes were made in January – with Betty admitting she can’t get her head round how the confusion could have gone on so long.
She added: “I’m not happy. I don’t understand how the drivers could make such a mistake for three months.
“The bus stops are still there in the street, not covered over – and people are still going out and waiting at the stops, but no buses arrive.
“There are a lot of elderly people live here and we rely on this bus. It’s too far for many of us to carry heavy shopping from the other bus stops in the area and we are very keen to get the bus stops in Barnes Avenue reinstated.”
Company says sorry for issues since change
Xplore Dundee has apologised to customers for the confusion surrounding the number 23 bus.
The company has also said it is in dialogue with Dundee City Council in a bid to have bus stops removed in the affected areas.
A spokeswoman said: “Service 23 was restored in October 2020 to provide a much needed service for this area of the city, however the route was redirected away from Barnes Avenue in January to an alternative stop a short distance away on Graham Street.
“This is to avoid any safety issues with a large volume of parked cars in Barnes Avenue.
“Clarification of this new route has been given to our drivers, and we’re approaching Dundee City Council about removing the bus stops there to make this clearer to customers.
“We apologise for any confusion caused since the reintroduction of the route and would advise any customers with queries or feedback about any service to get in touch with Customer Services directly on 01382 201121.”