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Friday, 19 September 2014

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Expanding bus firm to pick up more staff

A BUS company is taking on up to 20 more staff as its services are further expanded.

Chris Reay photo
Chris Reay

Wigton-based Reays is increasing the frequency of buses on its routes in Carlisle.

The move is being made as the company’s City Hopper services – in competition with established operator Stagecoach – reach their second anniversary.

In the latest developments, extra buses are being introduced on two of the busiest City Hopper routes, while another is being extended in response to public demand.

Those changes come into effect from Monday.

Managing director Chris Reay said: “City Hopper is continuing to go from strength to strength. We are delighted to celebrate our second birthday by introducing these latest changes.

“All our success throughout City Hopper’s first two years has been driven by our customers and we are thrilled to offer them more buses to help reduce waiting times as well as an expanded route and another money-saving discounted ticket which they have been asking for.

“It also means 15 to 20 more jobs – in addition to the ones we are filling at our new Penrith depot, from where we have started running a large number of local schools and college services plus the 105 and 106 public routes.”

City Hopper carries more than 25,000 passengers every week. Most of the latest jobs are for Carlisle-based drivers, but there are also vacancies to be filled at Reays’ depot off London Road and at its Wigton headquarters.

The latest recruitment drive will take the family-run firm’s staff to 140. As well as its public routes, the company delivers private hire.

More drivers are needed as the frequency of the 64 cross-Carlisle route between Kingstown and Morton is increased from hourly to up to every 15 minutes.

The number 70 from Carleton to Kingstown via the city centre will also run every 20 minutes at peak-times instead of hourly, while the 74 service from Carlisle to Dalston and Wigton will start and end at Durdar instead of Currock.

A new “Pound to Town” ticket is being launched. It will allow passengers to travel anywhere on the City Hopper network for £1 on weekdays from 10am until 2pm and all day on Saturdays.

Reays is also operating the official park and ride free shuttle service for the Taste Cumbria Food Festival in Cockermouth this weekend. Buses will run between Mitchells Auction Mart, off the A66, and the town centre on Saturday and Sunday from 9am until 6pm.

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