An under-fire bus operator has insisted again that its hand was forced in regard to the withdrawal of a key service to Glasgow.
On Sunday, October 18, the X5 service will be withdraw from Cumbernauld by First in a move that has sparked a volley of criticism from the public.
The bus firm has now told this newspaper that continuing the route was an impossibility on several levels and that any suggestion to the contrary is just untrue.
Their spokesperson has also denied unconfirmed claims that the service was both highly popular and financially viable.
She said: ‘‘The withdrawal of a service will always be the last resort for us.
“Despite our best efforts, the X5 has operated at a significant loss to the business for a number of years and although we do operate a number of loss-making routes, we are always looking to respond to passenger demand and increase patronage. In the case of the X5 we feel we exhausted all avenues to make it sustainable.
“Unfortunately our services have to meet demand and the cost of running them in the first place which the X5 has never been able to do. We would like to reassure passengers that we have no plans to remove the popular X3 service which is very well used.’’
Meanwhile, it’s emerged that the withdrawal of the X5 will be top of the on the agenda of the next Cumbernauld Community Forum meeting which takes place on the Cumbernauld College of New College Lanarkshire on Tuesday, October 13.
The meeting will starts at 7pm and will also address concerns about disabled/pram access on other local buses.