Outcry over cuts to Islington night bus service
PUBLISHED: 07:47 31 December 2011
Proposals to cut a night bus service in Islington have been condemned by councillors who claim the move will hit the poor the hardest.
Transport for London (TfL) is looking to axe the 236 night service, which runs between Finsbury Park Station and Hackney Wick, between the hours of 1am and 4am.
But councillors have called the proposals “madness” due to fears those who rely on the service will be left stranded.
Lib Dem councillor John Gilbert, who represents the Highbury East ward, said: “Sadly, this is like Groundhog Day as we were here last year too when Boris tried to cut the 236 night service.
“Nearly one thousand people currently use the night bus every week.
“There are no other buses that cover this route. Cutting it now is madness and will save very little money.”
Cllr Gilbert added: “Islington has one of the lowest levels of car ownership in the country and local night workers rely on bus services. As usual it is the least well-off who will be hardest hit by Boris’ plans.”
At a meeting on December 8, councillors called on Mayor Boris Johnson and TfL to reconsider the plans.
John Barry, head of network development at TfL, said: “Transport for London consulted about proposed changes to the night time services on route 236.
“These proposed changes would see the withdrawal of the services for three-and-a-half-hours each night when passenger numbers drop.
“For most of the route other night buses would continue to serve local residents at alternative bus stops within walking distance.
“The consultation closed on December 16. All responses to the consultation will be carefully considered before a final decision is made.”
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