National Express Coventry announces changes following public consultation

Following feedback from the public National Express Coventry has announced changes to its bus network in and around the city. 

The last time the network changed extensively was seven years ago. Since then there have been some significant developments across the city and surrounding areas. Travel patterns have also changed.

The bus operator has now released details of the network changes which will take effect from Sunday 22nd September 2019.

Some changes are small, such as timetable improvements, so that buses can run more often or more reliably. Other changes are larger, such as route changes, to cater for new and emerging travel needs. Some route numbers will also change.

Chris Gibbens, Commercial Director of National Express Bus, said: 

“Our current network of Coventry bus routes has remained relatively unchanged since 2012, however the local population and demand for bus services has. With so much change happening we also need to consider the future of bus travel in and around this vibrant city.

“During June and July 2019 we held a consultation on the proposed changes to our services. We’ve listened to our customers, our staff, local community groups and councillors and based on their feedback we’ll be implementing our new network of bus services from 22nd September 2019.

“Overall, most customers will see an improvement with more punctual and frequent buses. Where journeys involve a change of bus we’ve worked hard to better coordinate our services to make it simpler and easier for our customers.

“We’re introducing new links to the University Hospital and Westwood Business Park as well as connecting customers from across the city to important faith, community and health centres. To support these changes we’re delighted to create more jobs in Coventry by employing more drivers and running more buses to help improve the service we offer.”

In June 2019 National Express Coventry launched a public consultation to invite feedback on its proposed changes. Around 1,500 customers, staff and stakeholders completed the survey by responding to route specific questions, with an additional few hundred individual comments on the proposals.

85% of those that completed the survey said buses should serve Eagle Street to cater for the faith, community and health centres. National Express Coventry is introducing a new 3 and 3A service along Eagle Street and Springfield Road.

92% were in favour of running more buses at peak times on the 5 and 7 through Coundon. More peak buses will be introduced and the service will be better coordinated during off-peak periods to reduce customer waiting time.

86% said they would like the 8 and 8A to run along Corporation Street in both directions. National Express Coventry is changing the route in line with this feedback.

71% thought it would be good to have a direct link between Holbrooks and Coventry rail station. The road layout at the rail station is changing in November so National Express is delaying the change to allow time to assess how the new road layout works.

Many asked for the proposed city centre route change to be reconsidered and for more buses to reduce overcrowding between Earlsdon, the University and Kenilworth. Based on the feedback received the 11 will remain on its current route from the rail station to Pool Meadow and the frequency will be increased from Coventry to the University and on to Kenilworth and Leamington.

Other main benefits of the changes are: 

  • Buses will run more often to Allesley, Bell Green, Brownshill Green, Canley, Cheylesmore, Coundon, Earlsdon, Fargo Village, Hillfields, Holbrooks, Kenilworth, Keresley, Kirby Corner, Leamington Spa, Spon End, Tile Hill, University of Warwick, Westwood Park, Willenhall and Wood End
  • Improved evening and Sunday services for Canley, Cheylesmore, Coundon, Hillfields and Holbrooks
  • Extra early morning buses on Saturdays for many areas
  • Some routes benefit from extra Sunday morning buses
  • New direct link from Hillfields to University Hospital
  • New direct link from Allesley Park to University Hospital
  • New daytime service to Westwood Business Park from Coventry city centre and rail station
  • New direct links from Allesley Park and Canley to University Hospital

The disadvantages for a small number of customers are: 

  • Some direct links across the city centre will change, so some people may have to change buses in the city centre
  • Buses will run slightly less often to Allesley Park and some parts of Binley to help improve reliability

Full details of the changes are available online at Printed booklets will be available from the National Express travelshop in Pool Meadow bus station from early September and staff will also be on hand to answer any questions.

Published 20th August 2019