First Bus has announced that the No 1 service will return to Beeston from Sunday 4 October 2020.
A full timetable has not been published yet, but the service will operate 8 buses per hour Monday to Friday daytime. However the service will no longer run through to Holt Park, but terminate at Lawnswood School near the Ring Road in West Park.
The service which previously ran from Beeston to Holt Park via the city centre and Headingley was replaced in September last year with the No 10 service which only ran between Beeston and City Square. The change was said to be due to major roadworks on the Headrow as part of the Connecting Leeds project to improve bus reliability amongst other objectives. Those works have now reached the stage where buses can travel in both directions again.
With First Bus refusing to guarantee reinstatement of the route following the works a campaign group formed and a public meeting was held with Councillors and representatives from First Bus.
Brandon Jones, Head of External Relations at First Bus said:
“The change from 4 October is part of a review of services that takes into account both the re-opening of the Headrow and the impact of the Covid pandemic on both passenger demand and bus resource. Service 1 will operate between Beeston and Lawnswood School and will replace the Beeston – Leeds service 10. The service will provide 8 buses per hour Monday to Friday daytime and will directly re-connect Beeston residents with both the north of the city centre, Headingley and West Park. Operating to Lawnswood will allow us to provide a more resilient bus network in the area with Holt Park continuing to be well served by other bus services. Full timetable details will be available shortly.
“On behalf of First West Yorkshire, I’d like to thank the Beeston community for their patience during this period and hope the change will be well received.”
Cllr Andrew Scopes (Beeston & Holbeck) commented:
“I’m delighted that the number 1 bus route is being reinstated (even though it is a slightly shortened route). I’d like to thank those involved in the ‘Defend the number 1 bus route’ campaign for their part in getting the route back. Whilst public transport isn’t being used as much at the moment due to the global pandemic, ensuring we can make journeys around the city is still vital.
“Finally, I’d also like to take this opportunity to encourage people to wear face masks whilst travelling on public transport.”
A spokesperson for the Defend the Leeds number 1 Bus Route campaign said:
“This is a fantastic result and bus users across Beeston will be thrilled. If the 1 route had been permanently lost the impact on the health, wellbeing, social, education and employment outcomes for this community would have been catastrophic. We look forward to getting back on our route and will be ready to defend our bus at any time in the future!”