Stagecoach buses back on East Devon’s roads as Covid-19 restrictions are lifted

PUBLISHED: 11:00 06 June 2020

A Stagecoach bus. Picture: Shaun Flannery

A Stagecoach bus. Picture: Shaun Flannery

© Shaun Flannery Photography 2020

Stagecoach has announced a major increase in its bus services across Devon, following the relaxation of lockdown restrictions.

During the worst of the coronavirus crisis, services were pared down to emergency timetables, but from Sunday, June 14, many routes will return to normal.

Other services will have more buses running than the emergency timetable, but not as many as they had pre-lockdown.

Some routes have a completely new timetable.

Changes have been made on board the buses to maintain social distancing, with some seats blocked off to keep passengers two metres apart.

A strict cleaning regime has been introduced to keep ‘touch points’ in bus stations and on board vehicles sanitised, to keep passengers and staff safe from infection. Among the routes that will have a new full timetable, with timing changes to improve reliability, are routes 56 and 57 between Exeter and Exmouth; route 9/9A between Exeter and Lyme Regis, and route 4 between Exeter and Axminster.

Route 58, between Exeter and Budleigh Salterton, will revert to the previous school holiday timetable.

Mike Watson, managing director of Stagecoach South West, said: “We are currently closely monitoring our services and adding additional buses in to provide extra capacity when needed.

“By returning to our previous service levels in most cases, from the 14th June, we will have much better frequency than is currently in place to help us keep people moving safely.”

“We’ve revised some of our services in response to the changing needs and travel patterns of our customers and to improve reliability.

“Our teams have worked hard over the last few months to allow better connections for key workers, and to keep essential travellers moving.

“By working closely with local businesses and hospitals, we have built up strong relationships that have helped us to deliver services to better suit the needs of our communities.”

From Monday, June 15, it will be compulsory to wear a face covering on all public transport. This does not have to be a surgical mask; it can be a scarf or bandanna pulled up to cover the nose and mouth, and tied at the back of the head.

To view the latest timetables, visit the Stagecoach South West website.

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