On-demand North and East Herts bus service focused on Buntingford will offer passengers chance to travel to six other towns including Bishop's Stortford
Bishop's Stortford is part of a new on-demand bus service project for Hertfordshire.
The county council is one of 17 in the country to be awarded a Rural Mobility Fund from the Government for demand responsive transport (DRT).
The proposed scheme will serve North and East Herts, focusing primarily on Buntingford and the surrounding area. Travel will be allowed anywhere within this zone, however passengers will also be able to travel to key points – such as hospitals and high streets – in six surrounding towns: Royston, Baldock, Letchworth, Hitchin, Stevenage and Bishop's Stortford.
The DRT service will run every day of the week and be bookable via an app or by phone. If a passenger books by the app, they will be able to track the bus in real time and see where they will need to walk to in order to board it. It will also be possible to book for one-off trips and recurring journeys.
The service will offer passengers shorter waiting times, shorter walking distances to pick-up locations and shorter average journey times to key destinations.
The aim is to improve transport in North and East Herts and connections between rural areas and town centres, as well as expand access to employment, education, healthcare and shopping. It is hoped it will reduce social isolation and improve accessibility for people without private cars or access to public transport.
Bishop's Stortford West division county councillor Colin Woodward said: "It's great news for boosting sustainable transport connectivity for our residents."
Mark Kemp, HCC's director of environment and infrastructure, said: "Better transport links will help open up opportunities for our residents and businesses.
"We put a good case together for funding and I'm pleased that we were successful in our application. I look forward to feedback on how the new routes are doing – our priority is to ensure any new measures meet the needs of our communities."