Dudley & Sandwell proposed service changes


Stu is the founder of this West Midlands Bus Users website. He is not a bus enthusiast, but as a regular passenger takes an interest in public transport related matters, having relied on buses to get around for over twenty-five years now.

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27 Responses

  1. Hazel shipton says:

    Still no bus linking bearwood to smethwick, or a bus to galton bridge from bearwood.To connect with trains we have to get 2 buses from bearwood

    • Mike says:

      Totally agree there its two buses from Bearwood to High St and trains and two buses for us to both Bearwood and Oldbury and have a hourly bus to 120 for doctors and shopping and doesnt run evenings so have long waits or long walks up sloped roads. Elderly mom cannot walk to alternatives, with alternatives very late or dont turn up, hourly buses are virtually useless connection wise coming back and many missed out, so connections to Bearwood, Oldbury, Blackheath and Langley are very poor atm. Dont think many people want two buses just for a Metro or train link. The connections need to be sorted most finish early, dont run evenings (so you cannot even go out after 7pm as lack of buses and worry you miss one), Many connections arent in West Brom but are in Bearwood and Oldbury and you end up going in one direction when you want the opposite direction taking double the time, people are having to go by train towards Blackheath. Sloped rds are poorly linked up, we have gone from 3 buses an hour and one evening to 120 to one bus an hour and nothing evenings. I like the idea of X7 but hope it doesnt bypass most of the High St/St Pauls as less will use it around there its a long walk for those not just off the High St otherwise and be difficult to connect with.

  2. Janet Emanuel says:

    Still no link between Bearwood and Smethwick High Street (job center or Stoney lane)

    • Mike says:

      They should never have removed 444 and 450 fully they provided vital links for people from certain locations and none of the current services provide those links even the hourly buses. Tbh not sure NetworkWM care about people they said they want to provide better services for Warley yet havent provided anything B67 and B68 have generally poor links. They just told us we can get on two buses and walk up from 89 up sloped rds with a pile of shopping like to see them try it. And no links to trains including the Hawthorns which has the nearest Metro is ridiculous and helps people link to High St, Cape and Bearwood considering Bearwood is one of the main shopping areas in Smethwick. Lack of Oldbury services again strange considering its a main shopping centres for people in Smethwick too many West Brom and Birmingham services. People need West Brom but many equally need Bearwood and Oldbury and people in Bearwood need access to High St for facilities. Much of residentially Warley doesnt have many facilities so if you dont have a car you are struggling. Some people arent regular bus users but just want one so they can get to say Birmingham as its ‘handy’ and have a car otherwise. Many people though have no choice but to rely and use a bus for daily use so changes affect those people more. So much for connecting people.

    • Mike says:

      Stony Lane has gained buses at others expense. The sloped rds have lost out with the top with no high st buses for trains and 87 and shops and middle with lack of bearwood, 120 links and sloped rds are harder to walk, they have two west brom buses, two cape hill buses,two birmingham buses and a 120 link and its flatter and an easier walk from High St. They do need to give better service for sloped rds to make sure the links are good and equal to other rds a lot of people live off sloped rds. It is a postcode lottery currently.

  3. Mandy says:

    Why change the 129. To merry hill and the other way to birmingham . Only bus from Grafton rd oldbury

  4. Kerry says:

    This is now going to cause so much hassle for me ans others around thisnarea not having a bus serve the bell end road going from dudley to Birmingham!

  5. Sandra bagley says:

    What about the 244 and 243 they are nearly always late or don’t turn up at all .the 244 needs to go back to every 20 minutes thankyou

  6. Les Parsons says:

    What about getting the 246 to run on time ?

  7. Peter Stinton says:

    More confusion with changing service numbers and routes, especially with lack of continuity of existing routes necessitating changing buses part way through journey. The 121 West Bromwich to Dudley via Oldbury and Tower Road was well used.

  8. L.Turner says:

    So buses to and from Netherton via Darby End not only nothe mentioned but not improved. It’s nearly always late or doesn’t turn up. It should be more frequent than every hour.

  9. Jean McMillan says:

    1. Frequency of 128 from 30 to 20 minutes sounds good, IF THEY TURN UP!
    2.The 129 to Merry Hill from Warley is a long journey which will be made worse if we have to change buses on the way.
    3. As well as not having to swap services half way, it would be nice to be able to do my shopping or go to the cinema at Merry Hill and return home to Warley later in the evening rather than afternoon tea time.

  10. Kathleen Jones says:

    Lots of pensioners use the 127 across mincing lane and bellend including my self I am disabled this bus was a god send as I am limited with mobility don’t know what I will do now

    • Stu says:

      I’m sorry to hear this, if you have any concerns regarding these changes I’d advise you to email National Express at services@nationalexpress.com with the subject “Dudley & Sandwell consultation 2018”. If there is sufficient demand then Transport for West Midlands (TfWM) may look to provide an alternative service. If you struggle with mobility you may also want to consider registering for the Ring And Ride service: http://www.ringandride.org/

      • Kathleen Jones says:

        Thanks for prompt reply but why should I have to pay to go on ring and ride when I have a bus pass money is very tight

  11. Michelle says:

    Still no direct bus from Netherton to Russells Hall Hospital or to Rowley Regis Hospital and still no bus from Nwtherton to Blackheath.

  12. Jess wilde says:

    So now I have to walk even further to my bus stop now 129 won’t be going up grafton Road thanks!!! Would be nice if u asked people’s opinions before making changes as we the public are the ones using ur buses so surely we shud have a say but it doesn’t matter as we are highly dependent on u so will just have to stick with it

  13. Sharon Hackett says:

    The 87 and 82 have been dreadful lately, no idea when they’ll come (even first thing in the morning). Hopefully the new X7 route will help tjis and the massively overcrowded buses along these routes.

  14. Vivienne Boyce says:

    Use the129 route frequently. Are they proposing to have no buses running along the 129 route from Bearwood to Hurst Green??

  15. Kailash Patel says:

    When is all this happening ?

    • Stu says:

      The consultation document just states “Summer 2018”. As operators are required to give 56 days notice to the Office of The Traffic Commisioner to submit service changes, my best guess would be towards the end of August, as major service changes have taken place before during school holiday periods.

  16. Tracey says:

    I volunteer to work with disadvantaged adults on pensnett trading estate. These people DO NOT take well to change. This will completely throw their lives into turmoil. Over the last 3-4years the bus to trading estate has been changed several times its now the 205. I get the 9.30 from dudley. It HAS NOT run on time for years. It ran more on time when it went all the way to blackheath. We have lost passengers due to road works and tje fact it runs way off timetable. So many times we have been left in dudley waitin as its been turned at russells hall hosp or even left waiting at pensnett because its been turned again at rhhosp back to dudley. The 7.45 am from r hall to kford is packed. On a night at 15.40 it is again rammed. Unfortunately its full with rowdy, bad mouthing teens who will not stop swearing etc when there are both old and young passengers. 1 young man thinks theres nowt wrong in shouting about his ni**ers. If I were to start talking like that i would b called racist. Tjey also will not move bage etc so others can sit down and we should dare to ask them to move gawd help us. At the min its the only bus that runs to kford serving the new aldi. We really hope that we dont lose our service from dudley to kingswimford. There are also a few older men that can only get this bus from russells hall estate to go and see their wives every day in homes in kford. You really need to get the buses running properly instead of messing them around

  17. Jane says:

    What welcome news, I use the buses along the
    Hagley Road from Quinton to Birmingham daily and we already have an excellent service never waiting any longer than 10 mins for a bus. The new schedule sounds great…..

  18. Brittany-Leigh Hickman says:

    I don’t see the point in you taking the 205 down to every hour! I am one of many people that have to catch it everyday, it’s a joke that you ardon’t cutting it down to every hour cause the bus never even shows up in the first place bus is constantly late and then the bus drivers are rude! Should leave the bus running how it but making sure it’s on time, and getting them to run later!

  19. Annette says:

    Most of this seems to be re-numbering the buses rather than changing the routes. Weird that it says “The 127 will be renumbered 13A to fit better with other services along Hagley Road.” because when I first moved round here 32 years ago, the buses were 126, 127, 128, 129, 136, 137, 138, 139 and 140 and the odd one out was the Number 9! Wouldn’t it have been easier to re-number the 9? And where does the appendix A fit it? Anytime we feel like it? Always late? After a long wait? Ah well?

  20. Mike says:

    Problem here is many people in Oldbury and Smethwick want to use local retail shops they dont simply want to go to West Brom or Birmingham all the time the facilities including post offices, trains and shops are here, there and everywhere. People dont mind getting two buses to say Birchley Island for the shops there but its often 3 buses and loads of walking just for local people. Same with facilities by Albion Ground or 2 buses from Bearwood to trains. Some buses need to be more local. People dont mind changing in Oldbury and Bearwood for a local bus home but there simply is a lack of local buses there should be local buses serving all bus rds in Smethwick and Oldbury as Oldbury and Bearwood as well as High St are important for shopping, facilities or simply swapping buses/trains for elsewhere. The current system is too tiring, too complicated and too time consuming. Its bizarre Bearwood being Smethwick’s main shopping and swapping section there isnt direct buses from all the bus rds. It would be useful to have good connections to the 120 which from some rds is hard to connect with you end up mostly carrying shopping back from Oldbury a good 20mins and if you can get them the walks from 89 and 48 arent short or easy walks either 89 being worse which is why we never use 89 under any circumstances., the 87 being worse to walk up from than 120.

  21. Mike says:

    One big issue is the hourly buses deemed ‘socially necessary”, while some do plug gaps well others do it less than well, some NX services have been withdrawn in the past however no socially necessary service has helped replacing parts of the route leaving gaps in the network and links in the network lost. So neither hourly buses have filled the gap and no NX rerouted to cover those gaps. These buses do tend to be hourly meaning connecting back is especially difficult. Many have few using them but again as they are hourly and dont run evenings they arent as useful (some only run to 5pm not much use if people finish work at 5pm). Most people dont want to use hourly buses and there is often a NX alternative in parts which is more frequent. Some services are missed out and nobody wants to wait an hour. Also they are run by other companies meaning those with NX passes cannot use them even if it goes where they want to and as some arent direct to places people want even the disabled and hourly are reluctant to use them those groups being the only ones whichcan use them as they have concessionary passes. Some routing on them is poor so run a similar area to NX despite there being a NX service right there and within a shorter walking distance when they could run down roads which lack some local destinations and cover parts currently without proper service to some places.

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