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South Birmingham Bus Network Review

In October, I sent a letter to Centro based on feedback I received from constituents I had alerted to the South Birmingham Bus Network Review.  Below is Centro’s response, which indicates they were genuinely listening to people’s concerns:

December 2009

South Birmingham Bus Network Review – Centro Response

I have noted all of your comments and would like to address them. The two specific points you have raised with regard to the changes to the 45 and 69 bus services.

The re-routing of Service 45 via Masshouse Lane to operate away from the section of Redditch Road between Foyle Road and Pershore Road South, was included in the original proposals for the South Birmingham network review.  However, during the consultation period we requested National Express West Midlands improve the remaining service provision along the part of the Redditch Road where Service 45 is being removed.  As a result, from 25th October, Service 84 was diverted from Masshouse Lane and re-routed to operate along Foyle Road and Redditch Road.

The stretch of Redditch Road past the Kings Norton Surgery, between Foyle Road and Kings Norton Green, will be served by bus service 49 every 20 minutes to Solihull and Great Park and bus service 84 every 30 minutes between Hawkesley and the Q.E. Hospital.  Bus services 146 will continue to provide an hourly service along the Redditch Road from Redditch to Birmingham City Centre, with service 145 providing additional journeys past the surgery.  Whereas previously there were up to 11 vehicles per hour that operated along the section of Redditch Road in question, from 25th October there are 7 vehicles each hour.

We have received positive feedback regarding the re-routing of the 45 bus service, as Masshouse Lane provides a safer waiting environment than Redditch Road for the large number of sixth form students who attend The Cadbury College.

Since the original proposals were made to change the 69 bus service, it has now been decided to operate the service from Wythall to the Brandwood Park Road area via Maypole and Kings Heath.  The extension of the 76 from Kings Heath to the QE Hospital will provide a new direct link and will continue to provide a direct service between Selly Oak, Kings Heath and Solihull.  Service 20 operates along Gregory

Avenue and Sommerford Road to continue to provide a link to Shenley Academy and Weoley Castle.

Regarding the other points your constituents have raised I have attempted to answer these in order:

Service 1:    Centro is working closely with Birmingham City Council (BCC) and bus operators on creating the regions first punctuality improvement partnership on Service 1.  This will result in BCC implementing a number of highway improvements to make the service more reliable and therefore more attractive to users meaning it will hopefully attract more customers.  If service patronage increases then we are hopeful that NXWM would look to make service frequency improvements.

Service 11:  Operational issues are the responsibility of National Express West Midlands, therefore I have advised them of these comments. 

Service 19: This service has been routed via Pamela Road and South Road to maintain a bus service in this area.  So not to repeat the problems previously experienced along this road with parked cars, they are using smaller vehicles.

Service 19 is subsidised by Centro, however, we cannot continue to use public money to provide a service, when there have been increases in frequency of commercial services in the area.

Service 21: With regard to your particular concerns surrounding the new route of the 21, I can confirm that the 21 route is only being amended between University Station and Five Ways.  The new route from University Station will be along Vincent Drive, right on to Pritchatts Road, left on to Edgbaston Park Road, left on to Church Road and then via Highfield Road and Harborne Road to Five Ways.  The service then reverts to the current route via Broad Street and Great Charles Street Queensway to reach the City Centre (Colmore Row).

There are three main reasons for this change.  The first is to provide a more direct service for people wishing to use the bus between the new hospital site and the City Centre.  Service 21 will operate a similar route to a new service 20 and these will jointly offer five buses an hour from the City Centre to the new hospital site.  

The second reason is to provide those people who use the 21 from areas such as Weoley Castle, Bangham Pit and Selly Oak with a more direct route into the City Centre.   The third reason is to improve the bus offer for students, particularly those who live in the halls of residence on Edgbaston Park Road.

The people who wish to access Harborne Village or the Botanical Gardens will still be able to do so by using one of the other services that call there.  This includes the 22, 23 and 29 which operate in some of the same areas as the 21 or can be accessed by changing buses.  The 21 will still stop close to the GP practice that you refer to and people wishing to access this facility can use the stop on Vincent Drive or Pritchatts Road and make a short walk.

Service 27: It is expected that the new 20 minute frequency of this service will provide a more reliable service than previously.

Service 84: The new 84 will currently operate until around 8pm and there are no plans to introduce a Sunday service on this route.

Service 448: There are no changes to this service as part of the South Birmingham Network Review.

I hope I have managed to address all of the points you have raised however, if I can be of any further assistance please do not hesitate to contact me again.

Yours sincerely

Kerry Meredith

Customer Relations Team Leader

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