Bus service cuts due to shortage of drivers

PUBLISHED: 10:16 08 August 2008 | UPDATED: 13:31 06 May 2010

A SUPERMARKET manager was two hours late for work when the bus he relied on to get to St Albans station on Friday failed to arrive. Anthony King planned to catch a 7.10pm S Bus from Chiltern Road in St Albans to connect with the 724 to Watford from St Alb

A SUPERMARKET manager was two hours late for work when the bus he relied on to get to St Albans station on Friday failed to arrive.

Anthony King planned to catch a 7.10pm S Bus from Chiltern Road in St Albans to connect with the 724 to Watford from St Albans City Station at 7.23pm. He had bought a ticket to cover both journeys.

But the S Bus did not finally arrive until 9.13pm and his connection had gone so he had to pay again for a ticket on another bus to Watford where he arrived at 10pm - two hours after he was due to start work at Sainsbury's in the town.

Anthony's partner Lorraine Gibbins, of Malvern Close, St Albans, hit out at bus company UNO over the incident and was critical of the service as a whole.

She said: "When you don't drive you rely on that service. UNO is a big company so why can't they take one or two drivers off other buses?"

Lorraine said that on the previous Sunday, the family had bought Rover tickets to cover the cost of the bus to Sainsbury's in Holywell Hill but had ended up having to pay for a taxi back because no bus arrived.

She said she had tried to contact UNO to complain about her partner's problems with the service but had not been able to get a reply. She added: "I just want a proper service. Is that too much to ask?"

UNO took over the St Albans service run previously by Centrebus in March and moved the depot to Hatfield shortly afterwards. A spokesperson confirmed this week that they had been forced to cut services because of a lack of staff.

She added: "We are in the process of hiring more drivers and once we have our full quota of drivers, the service will improve and be better than ever.

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