Bus service changes and news

Latest news and notifications of planned changes to bus routes and timetables.

Pay less to travel by bus

From 1 January to 31 December a single bus journey will cost no more than £2 on most routes across England.

This means that between 1 January 2023 and 31 December 2024 a single bus journey on all eligible bus routes run by participating operators will cost no more than £2 (or £4 return) thanks to Government funding.

The scheme is part of the Government's Help for Households campaign designed to support families through cost-of-living pressures.

The temporary £2 bus fare cap on fares does not change the concessionary fare scheme or impact free travel.

The majority of the local bus operators in North Yorkshire will be taking part in the scheme. Find out more about the £2 bus fare cap on GOV.UK or by visiting your bus provider's website.

The Government fare cap scheme does not include demand responsive services, services that only operate on school days or services where the primary purpose is to transport school children, leisure routes such as sightseeing tours or open top routes, ‘through-journey’ tickets involving two or more routes and bus services not open to the general public.

Forthcoming changes to routes and timetables

Last updated: 11 April 2024

Service number Route description Operator details Phone number Website address Date of change Change to service
128 Scarborough - Helmsley East Yorkshire Motor Services 01482 592929 East Yorkshire Motor Services 26 May 2024 Introduction of summer Sunday timetable with extended journeys to and from Helmsley.
825 York - Fountains Abbey - Richmond Reliance Motor Company 01904 768262 Reliance Buses website 26 May 2024 New seasonal service 825: York – Fountains Abbey – Richmond with effect from 26 May 2024.
RS2, RS3 Ripon City Services North Yorkshire Council Fleet 0300 131 2131 Our bus timetables page 28 May 2024

New timetable. RS2 departs Ripon Bus Station at 7:40am, 9:25am, 10:55am, 1:15pm, 2:45pm, 3:15pm and 5:35pm. 

RS3 departs at 10:15am, 11:45am and 2:10pm

RS4 Ripon City Services North Yorkshire Council Fleet 0300 131 2131 Our bus timetables page 28 May 2024 New route and timetable. Departs Ripon Bus Station at 9:55am, 11:25am and 1:55pm. Route is extended beyond North Bridge to serve Ure Bank and Riverside Meadows Caravan Park
OAT1 Open Air Theatre Burniston Road Scarborough - Spa Roundabout Scarborough Shoreline Suncruisers 01723 353712 Shoreline Suncruisers website 2 June 2024 From Scarborough Open Air Theatre to Scarborough Spa Roundabout at 10:10pm on days of events at the Open Air Theatre.
OAT2 Open Air Theatre Burniston Road Scarborough - Esplanade Scarborough Shoreline Suncruisers 01723 353712 Shoreline Suncruisers website 2 June 2024 From Scarborough Open Air Theatre to Esplanande, Scarborough at 10:10pm on days of events at the Open Air Theatre.
OAT3 Open Air Theatre Burniston Road Scarborough - West Borough Scarborough Shoreline Suncruisers 01723 353712 Shoreline Suncruisers website 2 June 2024 From Scarborough Open Air Theatre to Westborough, Scarborough at 10:10pm on days of events at the Open Air Theatre.
OAT Scarborough Rail Station - Open Air Theatre East Yorkshire Motor Services 01482 592902 East Yorkshire Motor Services 2 June 2024 Service to provide connections to and from events at the Open Air Theatre.
X4 Harrogate - Wedderburn Road Harrogate Coach Travel 01423 339600 Connexions Buses 3 June 2024 New service from Harrogate to Wedderburn Road via Wetherby Road at 10:30am and 1pm returning from Wedderburn Road via Knaresborough Road at 10:42am and 1:15pm.
M3, M4, M5 Stockton - Guisborough - Danby Arriva North East 0191 2811313 Arriva North East website 30 June 2024 Start of summer seasonal service.
M6, M7 York - Danby, Pickering - Thornton-le-Dale York Pullman 01904 622992 York Pullman website 30 June 2024 Start of summer seasonal service.
M4, M31 Guisborough - Sutton Bank, York - Helmsley Reliance Motors 01904 768262 Reliance Buses website 30 June 2024 Start of summer seasonal service.

Full timetables for these changes will be available on our timetable information page from the date of change and should be available from the bus operators ten days before the date of change.

Further information

Enhanced partnership plan and schemes

Our Notice of Intent to prepare an Enhanced Partnership Plan and Schemes covering the North Yorkshire area.

We will now proceed to producing the Bus Service Improvement Plan which we need to submit to the Department for Transport before the end of October. If you have any further queries please contact us.

Notice of Intent to prepare an Enhanced Partnership Plan and Schemes

29 June 2021

At its meeting on 22 June 2021, North Yorkshire County Council gave approval to proceed with the development of an Enhanced Partnership. The commencement of this is confirmed through this notice of the intention to prepare an Enhanced Partnership Plan and accompanying Enhanced Partnership Schemes, as required and set out in section 138F of the Transport Act 2000.

Better deal for bus user

In February 2020 the Department for Transport announced funding of £220 million to improve bus services through it’s Better Deal for Bus Users. In North Yorkshire we asked for proposals from bus operators, Parishes, County Councillors, members of the public and other stakeholders on how we might spend the funding. A total of 77 responses were received with requests or suggestions, some included multiple requests and a total of 115 suggestions were put forward. Whilst many requests did not include costs it is estimated that the total value of requests submitted is around £7million.

Supported bus services fund

In North Yorkshire we were asked to submit proposals to allocate £757k for this funding, These submissions to the authority were prioritised. This process included assessments such as comparison against current levels of service availability and if the journey could already be made by connecting journeys, reasons for travel (for example employment, healthcare etc.), cost benefit, and officer assessment on whether the journey has potential for longer term sustainability.

The DfT has now subsequently advised that given the current Covid-19 pandemic the Supported bus services fund may also be used on maintaining the supported and commercial bus service network at pre-pandemic levels over an 18-month period.

Given the rurality of North Yorkshire the authority is concerned that operators will not be able to continue with or reinstate both contracted and commercial services at pre-pandemic levels as passenger numbers are likely to be affected for some considerable time. As a result, the authority is expecting to spend the full amount of £757,185 on maintaining the supported and commercial bus network at pre-pandemic levels. 

Should all of part of the allocation of Supported Bus Service Fund not be required for this purpose the intention is then to revert to the suggestions received as part of the consultation exercise and improve access for local communities across seven districts of North Yorkshire in a priority order until funds are exhausted.

Rural Mobility Fund 

In North Yorkshire we have now submitted two expression of interest to the Department for Transport for the Rural Mobility Fund.

The first bid is around resolving some of the health transport issues in the Richmondshire and Hambleton areas. A number of consultation responses referred to problems accessing hospital services in these areas. The proposal is for a pilot Demand Responsive Transport project through a single booking portal to book transport services to the hospital, both in advance and on-demand.

The second bid is based around working directly with communities to establish their needs and provide them with the resources to resolve the transport issues they identify. The concept is to establish several Community Hub led demand responsive transport schemes bringing transport to the heart of the rural areas, and provide a menu of support options to each Community Hub. The resources on offer will be a vehicle, Uber style booking app, transport management function and paid driver support.

We are disappointed that we have not been successful in securing funding from Department for Transport as part of the Rural Mobility Fund. We submitted two applications for funding with both bids focused on providing flexible transport services, where transport is shared and vehicles vary their routes based on demand rather than using a fixed route or timetable, therefore providing transport that would react to local needs.

One was designed to support community hubs in putting transport at the heart of rural areas, providing support with back office, planning, scheduling and transport management functions to enable services to be tailored to local requirements. The other would have seen the creation of a flexible transport to provide improved access to healthcare. We are sure both projects would have been welcomed by residents.

Leisure bus services

Services on which passes are not valid  

Free concessionary bus passes are not valid on these services when boarding in North Yorkshire:

Scarborough area

Service Number Route
109 / Red Scarborough Sea Front Tour buses
64 / 65 Scarborough Park and Ride Services
P1 / P2 Whitby Summer Seasonal Park and Ride
1 Whitby Summer Tour Services

Other service types

Generally community transport demand responsive services operated under Section 19 permit are not eligible services and concessionary pass holders are not entitled to free travel. A discounted fare will often be offered, please check with the relevant operator.

Bank holiday bus services

Please be aware that some local bus services in North Yorkshire will be affected over the Bank Holiday period.

Some services will run at different times during the holiday period. For full details please contact the operator or phone traveline on: 0871 200 2233.

Bus service accessibility

We are working hard to ensure that local bus services are fully accessible to all. For further detailed information about accessibility please contact the local bus operator prior to travel.

Grants to support bus services during Covid-19

Between 17 March 2020 and 31 August 2021 the Department for Transport made funding available to local bus operators and local authorities to maintain appropriate bus services during the pandemic and lockdown periods. The funding was available to ensure that services were available for workers and other essential trips during lockdown, that capacity was available to maintain social distancing when appropriate, to support local economies during the road map out of lockdown and maintain bus services during periods of low passenger usage.

In North Yorkshire we have been able to claim over £1.5million to support operators who run services under contract to the authority and to support demand responsive and Community Transport services. 21 Operators have received payments to support 92 services and over 42 thousand kilometres of service per week. This is in addition to the amounts we pay normally to operators for contracted services and through the English National Concessionary Transport Scheme.  

Payments to operators for supporting services are listed in the following table

Operator Support provided Number of routes supported
East Yorkshire Motor Services £240,032 4
Arriva North East  £266,062 3
Arriva Yorkshire £174,547 3
North Yorkshire County Council Fleet Services  £157,277 37
Transdev Harrogate & District £132,212 3
Hodgsons Coach Operators £86,347 6
Transdev Yorkshire Coastliner £72,495 2
Upper Dales Comm Partnership Ltd £49,118 3
Scarborough Dial a Ride  £55,860 demand responsive
Procters Coaches (Dales & District) £45,893 6
Transdev Keighley & District Travel  £36,208 1
G Abbott & Sons  £33,228 2
Kirkby Lonsdale Coach Hire  £20,980 1
Whitby & District Community Transport £18,322 2 + demand responsive 
Reeth & District Community Transport £19,168 demand responsive
Upper Wharfedale Bus CIC £12,816 1
SCAD £14,173 demand responsive
Nidderdale Plus £5,958 demand responsive
York Pullman Bus Company £4,182 3
Ryedale Community Transport £947 7
Thornes Independent  £811 5

In addition to the above £24,6300 has been claimed on other allowed restart expenses such as additional bus shelter cleans and providing Covid-19 related signage and marketing.

Bus service operators grant

Bus Service Operators Grant is a grant paid by Department for Transport, to operators of eligible bus services and community transport organisations to help them recover some of their fuel costs.

The amount each bus operator receives is based on their annual fuel consumption.

Bus Service Operators Grant also aims to benefit passengers by:

  • helping operators keep fares down
  • enabling operators to run services that might otherwise be unprofitable and could lead to cancellation

Bus Service Operators Grant payments are also made to local authorities for running bus services. These sums are broadly equivalent to Bus Service Operators Grant payments previously paid to authorities for running section 19 community transport services in-house and bus operators for running services under tender to local authorities. In financial year 2020/2021 North Yorkshire County Council spent £1,039,698 and details of how this was spent is detailed in the  Department for Transport Bus Service Operators Grant Return (pdf / 73 KB).