Diamond Bus axe several Stourbridge routes
  Originally published 30 June 2007.

Diamond Bus
Diamond Bus, part of the Go-Ahead bus group and trading as Go-West Midlands, are axing many of the services across the West Midlands from July 22, 2007, which include a handful of services in the Stourbridge area. The services affecting the Stourbridge area are as follows:

9A / 9B from Kinver to Halesowen College

194 from Kidderminster to Halesowen College via Wynall / Stourbridge

247 / 248 From Stourbridge to Dudley

311 From Stourbridge to Dudley

765 From Mary Stevens Park to Hagley RC School

766 From Kingswinford to Hagley RC School

The reason from Go-West Midlands is that the services above are not proving financially viable, and whilst the services are being axed, more routes are being improved across the county with improved frequencies and new services being introduced.

Most of the affected services are school services, with many schools currently being served by Diamond, looking for alternative operators to take over the running of these services.

Phil Tonks, operations officer for Bus Users UK, has said that the responsibility to provide dedicated school services should be dealt with by the Local Education Authorities (LEAs) and not commercial companies. "These are commercial services run by Diamond which are not making what the company wants and so Diamond is quite within its rights to drop them" he said.

"Parents now have a lot more choice about what school their children go to so this means more people are travelling across the borough meaning there is certainly a need for dedicated services funded by the LEA."

Councillor Angus Adams, Dudley Council's cabinet member for transport said he was disappointed by the cuts.

A Dudley Council spokesman said "Dudley Council will work closely with the colleges, schools and Centro to ensure that disruption to travel arrangements is kept to a minimum. At this early stage it is not possible to confirm which routes will be taken up by other bus operators. This will be checked with the appropriate agencies on a regular basis."

SBI will take the affected timetables offline, hopefully replacing them when more details are confirmed on affected services as to who, if any, will take over any of the school services.