Bus services to be cancelled and changed amid driver shortage

The number 25 First bus at Castle Meadow, Norwich.Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The number 25 First bus at Castle Meadow, Norwich.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

Bus operator First Eastern Counties has said a shortage of drivers has forced it to make a string of cancellations to services.

Due to the national driver shortage, 10 of First's bus services in Norfolk will be affected.

The cancellations, starting from Monday, September 20, will affect its Network Norwich and Excel D services.

The cancellations of some bus times are planned to be temporary but have no final date set.

First Eastern Counties said it was a "difficult decision".

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The company said it had taken into account a "wide range of factors including detailed analysis of ongoing passenger data for each journey", in order to minimise inconvenience and accommodate passengers on other journeys.

The services affected by certain times being cut will be the Pink Line 11 and 12, the Turquoise Line 13, the Green Line 14, the Orange Line 21 and 22, the Red Line 24 and 24a, the Blue Line 25 and 26, the Yellow Line 28, the Purple Line 36 and 39 and Excel D line.

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This will affect the city centre, Sprowston, Wroxham, Spixworth, Hethersett, Dussindale, Old Catton, Bowthorpe, Thorpe St Andrew, Queens Hills, the University of East Anglia, the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital, Thorpe Marriott, Mile Cross, Lakenham, Dereham, and Horsford.

Certain services will be affected more than others, with the Green Line and the Yellow Line having the most times cancelled.

The firm said it is working to recruit and train new drivers to fill the shortage.

Full details of the cancellations are available on First Eastern Counties' website.

Bus operators across the country are experiencing staff shortages, meaning many companies are having to cancel routes.

The driver shortage is also affecting food supply and shop stock.

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