Community News From Around Our Area

Village Bus Pilot Proves to be a Success

West Midlands Mayor, Andy Street, says a pioneering ‘on demand’ bus service that serves Balsall Common and Meriden has proven so successful it’s being expanded across the area.

Launched around the University of Warwick Campus and south-west Coventry last spring, the West Midlands On Demand bus-to-order service covered Balsall Common and Meriden as well as Kenilworth. More than 7,500 rides were taken on the pilot scheme.

Mr Street, who leads the West Midlands Combined Authority, said, “Using the latest app technology to free buses from fixed routes and stops is just the kind of innovation we are famed for in the West Midlands.

“It is part of our plans to offer convenient and affordable alternatives to the car as we look to reduce congestion and address the climate change emergency.

“The service has proved particularly popular for those whose journeys do not follow main routes. This success is why, with our partners, we are expanding the zone covered to include the hospital and Coventry city centre as well as increasing the number of WM On Demand buses available to passengers.”

The buses can be booked via the smartphone app or telephone to pick up passengers for any chosen journey within the zone.

The pilot service was launched by Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) as part of the Future Mobility Zone/Showcase scheme to test innovative transport services and technology aimed at reducing private car use and traffic congestion on our streets.

Fares cost £3 per journey, or from £1 for concessions. For groups of two, three or four booking the same trip there’s an extra £1 per additional person.

Caption: Cllr Jim O’Boyle of Coventry City Council, West Midlands Mayor Andy Street and WM On Demand driver Talvir Grewal launch the service last year.