ANGRY town residents are to lose a “lifeline” bus service.

Public transport users in Buckley have been informed by Flintshire-based bus operator Townlynx that its number 28 Wrexham to Mold service will no longer run from April 1.

The reason, a statement to passengers stated, is that the service will no longer be subsidised by Flintshire Council.

It added: “The council have a shortfall in their budget and are unable to cover the cost of the service. We do not accept any responsibility for its withdrawal.”

Flintshire Council transport managers, however, say the local authority did provide a small “de-minimis subsidy payment to this commercial bus service which was not being removed”.

Townlynx transport manager Mark Kearney said: “We have been operating this route since 2002 and we are still getting the same subsidies as day one. We have had no rate increase.

“Unfortunately you can’t run a business when you’re losing money.”

Mr Kearney says although the 28 Mold to Wrexham service will no longer run from April 1 the Flint to Mold service is being maintained but the Holywell to Flint service will be withdrawn because of low usage.

Buckley councillor Carol Ellis said the service is well used by residents who travel to and from Wrexham Maelor Hospital.

“Not everyone has a car and this is going to make it very difficult for those people to get to the hospital,” she said.

“Every service taken away isolates people more.”

Cllr David Ellis, mayor of Buckley, added: “I think the council needs to have a rethink and get their priorities right, because Buckley seems to be getting hit every which way.

“I’m very disappointed. The service really is a lifeline.”

Buckley resident Chris Allen, 39, said: “It is my view that Flintshire Council is on the verge of brinkmanship by stopping a vital service that is used by those who have no other means of transportation.”

Danielle Jones, 33, uses the bus every day to visit her dad in Wrexham.

“My dad has dementia and it’s going to make it impossible for me to get much time with him at all on a daily basis,” she said.

“I usually take my boys to school, then get on the 9.18am bus with my baby girl to go see my dad and it drops us right outside.

“When this bus stops I will have to get the bus to Mold, then Mold to Wrexham.

“I wouldn’t be able to get to my dad till nearly dinner time, spend half hour with him, then back on bus to get home in time to pick up my children from school.

“It’s going to make it horrible as I usually spend a couple of hours with him.”

Mr Kearney said when Townlynx gave notice to withdraw the service two months ago, Flintshire Council called for tenders to take on a replacement 29 service but the company has now received notification from the council that the 29 would now not be going ahead.

Steve Jones, Flintshire Council’s chief officer for Streetscene and transportation said: “The council has been informed by Townlynx that they intend to withdraw the No 28 bus service (Mold to Wrexham section) from March 31, 2019.

“Following notification of the withdrawal of the No 28, the council invited bus operators to tender for a replacement route (to be named No 29). Unfortunately, the cost of a contracted service is prohibitive therefore the route will not be replaced by the authority. 

“The council has been made aware of notices placed on Townlynx vehicles providing incorrect information to passengers and have requested the company to remove these immediately.”

Cllr David A Bithell, Wrexham Council’s lead member for transport, said: “We did provide a small cross-boundary subsidy. 

“This funding has now been used to support Wrexham services.”