UPDATED: Since we took over operation of bus 73 (Chelmsford to Maldon via Hatfield Peverel and Heybridge Basin) at the beginning of September, we have reviewed the service and have concluded that we should not continue it.
Essex County Council have now let a contract to First Essex Buses to take over the service starting on Monday November 16. Their new timetable is HERE. We are talking to First about acceptance of scholars tickets we sold to the end of the autumn term.
Leigh Christmas Lights are being switched on on the evening of Friday 27th and as a result, some roads will be closed.
Our 6A commuter buses from the Station should be able to run as normal.
On service 17, it is now complicated by the closure of Leigh Hill due to a building collapse. So the 1642 from Southend will divert from Chalkwell Avenue onwards and may not be able to serve chalkwell Station, Grand dRive or leigh Broadway.
UPDATE Weds November 4, 1700
The bridge has reopened and from the start of traffic tomorrow (Thursday) buses 9, 10 and 419 will revert to their normal routes and the shuttle buses will cease.
Apologies for the inconvenience, completely outside our control - but an interesting practice run for next summer when there is a lengthy planned closure. We\\\'re meeting Essex County Council next week to discuss those plans.
Due to a road closure affecting the section of route 71 between Coxtie Green and Kelvedon Hatch, buses on service 71 will follow the 72 route from Coxtie Green and Kelvedon Hatch, meaning they will go through Navestock Side and not serve a couple of stops on the A128 as a consequence.
This is due to work on the north end of Mores Lane. Buses will return to normal as soon as the road is reopened. The closure is expected to run from Monday November 23rd (and was the work originally advertised from October 5th) for about 5 days.
Our new bus 21, Black Notley to the town centre, is already running. From Monday November 2nd we start the extended services 38 & 38A, all the way from Witham to Halstead, serving Rivenhall, Silver End, Cressing, Tye Green, Freeport (bus 38) or Stubbs Lane (for Alec Hunter school, bus 38A), Braintree town centre, Queens Road, Deanery Gardens, Bocking Church Street, High Garrett and Gosfield. Buses run every 30 minutes between Witham and Bocking Deanery Gardens, extended every hour to Halstead. Some buses go via Braintree College, see separate news story for details.
Our new buses 38 & 38A replace First Essex buses 131 & 132 and the north end of bus 21.
We look forward to welcoming you on board our new services! Full times are available HERE.
Please bear with us over the next few days as our drivers and passengers get to grips with the new routes and times! We\'re doing our best.
Most fares will be the same or similar to the old First services but some may be a little different. We are offering special value day and weekly tickets over various parts of the route:
Halstead Rover - anywhere between Halstead and Braintree Bus Park for £4 a day, £15 a week.
Braintree Rover - anywhere between Bocking and Fowlers Farm (A120 junction) for £3.60 a day, £15 a week and £50 for 4-weeks. Also valid on our 21 bus.
Witham Rover - anywhere in Witham town, including Conrad Road, for £3 a day, £14 a week. Also valid on our buses 39, 40 & 90.
And if you want the freedom of the whole of routes 21, 38 & 38A, ask for the Three Rivers Rover, £6 daily, £23 weekly.
All these value tickets can be bought from your driver.
Due to the emergency closure of the bridge in the centre of Finchingfield after a lorry hit a building, bus 419 will be altered.
The main 419 bus will start at Finchingfield, The Fox. For passengers from Shalford and Wethersfield, a shuttle bus is being provided by Essex County Council, operated by Flagfinders. It will call at all normal bus stops on that section of route (please signal clearly to the driver!) and will take you to the village green in Finchingfield, where you will need to walk over the footbridge to the waiting bus. The same will apply for the afternoon return trip.
Please note the shuttle bus will run slightly EARLIER than the normal bus times, please be at the stop at least 5 minutes BEFORE your usual time. This is so that the main bus can still leave Finchingfield on time.
No tickets will be sold on the shuttle, please pay the driver or show your pass when you board the main bus.
At present we don\\\'t know how long this will last for, we are waiting to hear when the bridge may be reopened. (Correct at Friday October 30, 1830).
We\'re starting new bus routes 38 & 38A on November 2nd and selected journeys will serve Braintree College on Mondays to Fridays. The trips concerned are as follows:
From Halstead: the 0740 from Halstead Colne Road, arriving at the College at 0811.
From Witham: the buses from Witham Station at 0727 and 0747 both go via the College. They call at Braintree Bus Park at 0809 and 0833, arriving at College at 0815 and 0839. We would encourage students to use the first of the two buses where possible, to avoid overloading on the second trip.
To Halstead: buses pass the College at 1546 and 1646 [these times are not shown in our Three Rivers leaflet].
To Braintree town centre and Witham: buses pass the College at 1601, 1631, 1701 and 1731.
At other times of day, you can catch buses 38 & 38A from Queens Road shops bus stop, about an 8 minute walk from the College along Coldnailhurst Avenue. To see the full timetable, click HERE.
Term passes issued by First Essex buses specifically for travel to and from Braintree College will be accepted on our buses. We will publish details of our own term tickets here in due course.
Due to a burst water main closing Deanery Hill, bus 10 is diverting via Coldnailhurst Avenue, Queens Road, Glebe Avenue & Churchill Road, not serving Church Lane or Deanery Corner. This is expected to last for 3 days. Bus 9 is NOT affected.
We will resume the normal route once the road reopens.
From November 2nd, the service to Ebenezer Close and Church Street will be numbered 40 (instead of 38) and will run as a shuttle to and from the town centre in Witham, still serving Morrisons, the station and Collingwood Road. Most buses will run at the same times as the current service, except the mid afternoon buses on Mondays to Fridays which are retimed and now give later buses back from the town centre. The service will be operated by Arrow Taxis on behalf of Stephensons, but don\'t worry, you can still use your Concession Pass and Stephensons\' Witham day tickets.
For the new times, please click HERE.
Due to a road closure, the morning 702 bus will pick up 5 minutes EARLIER than usual at all stops in Frinton, Kirby Cross and Thorpe-Le-Soken from Wednesday October 7th until 14th. This is because the bus will have to divert on the way into Clacton whilst a new roundabout is completed on Thorpe Road. We need to start earlier to allow for the diversion and get the bus into Colchester on time.
UPDATED: the works are running late, we\\\'re told the road will remain closed now until Thursdaty 15th.