More than 10,500 journeys have been made on Bromsgrove’s on-demand bus service since it launched in the town six months ago.
‘Bromsgrove on Demand’ (BOD), which has reached the halfway point of its 12-month pilot, was launched by Worcestershire County Council in July 2021.
In the first six months, 10,759 journeys have been made on the buses. On a single day this month, 120 passengers used the service, which is its full capacity.
Worcestershire County Council is one of the first authorities in the country to pilot Demand Responsive Transport (DRT).
Councillor Alan Amos, Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport, said: “The Bromsgrove on Demand service really has exceeded all of our expectations.
“We launched it last summer knowing that the residents of Bromsgrove would see the benefits of the service and use it and they have certainly done that.
“The buses have helped to improve connectivity in Bromsgrove and allowed passengers to get to work, school, to the shops and various leisure facilities in Bromsgrove.
“We want to make public transport more attractive to our residents and demand responsive transport is the way forward.”
Two Diamond mini-buses are being used on the service and they can each seat 13 passengers and it runs 7am to 7pm.
BOD offers a bespoke alternative service to the familiar local bus. It provides a flexible, affordable, and sustainable mode of public transport. Passengers request a journey through an app or sometimes a telephone call and they are collected quickly and within a few metres of their location. Passengers share journeys with others. Journeys may involve a short walk to maximise route efficiency, eliminate lengthy detours, and replicate journey times in a private car.
The ’Worcestershire on Demand’ app is available on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. When someone downloads the app, they will be able to select their pick-up and drop-off location when booking a journey. The system will then direct people to a nearby ‘virtual bus stop’ for pick-up and drop-off, allowing for quick and efficient shared trips without any detours.
For anyone not able to download the app, they can contact Worcestershire Hub on 01905 765765 and choose option 8/9 for assistance.
When the pilot comes towards an end in July 2022, it will be reviewed to see whether the service can be rolled out across other parts of the county.
DRT forms part of Worcestershire’s wider Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP) which aims to develop solutions to provide an environmentally sustainable, accessible and fully integrated transport network.