BREAKING NEWS: Replacement service found for axed school bus that transports 15, 000 passengers across South Yorkshire

A BrightBus.
A BrightBus.

Parents and school children can breathe a huge a sign of relief today after it was revealed an axed school bus service will be replaced.

Thousands of youngsters were left hanging in the balance over how to get to school when it was announced that the BrightBus service would end this month.

A BrightBus pulls up outside a school.

A BrightBus pulls up outside a school.

The fleet has for two decades transported around 15, 000 passengers a day to and from the school gates across all of South Yorkshire and part of Worksop so its closure caused real concern for pupils and parents.

But now South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive has stepped in and pledged to find a replacement or alternative travel for all 78 routes affected that serve 32 schools from September.

However, the organisation did accept that some pupils 'will not have direct links previously provided by BrightBus'.

SYPTE has been supported by South Yorkshire's local councils and will use £225, 699 of emergency public funding for the scheme.

Ben Gilligan, SYPTE's director of public transport, said: “Working closely with bus companies and affected schools, and with the support of the local authorities, we are pleased to have been able to put alternative travel arrangements in place for all routes at risk.

“While we have explored every avenue, the situation does mean some pupils will not have the direct links previously provided by BrightBus.

"Together with the schools, we are now focused on supporting those currently using the small number of services that will not be covered to plan alternative travel on the local bus network ahead of the start of next term.”

It has previously been revealed that 90 members of staff face redundancy as part of the BrightBus closure.

Managing director Mick Strafford previously said he is winding up the firm due to "ill health" and added that he did not want to sell the company he founded to another transport operator, believing it "doesn't always work when another company comes in and takes over."

He also stressed the firm was not in financial difficulty and added that he could offer staff a "good redundancy package."

The company was formed in 1998 and operated out of a depot in North Anston. They used a fleet of about 60 brightly green-coloured buses, some of which were imported from Hong Kong.

Revised bus timetable information for schools served by BrightBus is available now at travelsouthyorkshire.com/brightbus