We had some feedback from the Combined Authority:
“Thank you for writing to me and bringing these matters to my attention. Bus reliability is very important, and we take all complaints about it very seriously.
Officers from the Combined Authority recently met with the Whippet Coaches management team to discuss why services keep getting cancelled. Unfortunately, Whippet Coaches are suffering from the same issue as all operators nationwide, which is driver shortages. This is mostly through a mixture of staff sickness and difficulties in recruiting new drivers. Several new drivers have been recruited and pay rates have been increased. Additionally, casual drivers are being hired. Whippet Coaches also admit that there are some older vehicles in their fleet that are more prone to breakdowns. They are putting measures in place to increase the number of staff available, and will be replacing the older, unreliable vehicles.
Whippet Coaches are a long-established and respected local firm, and we are trying to work with them to steady this situation because driver shortages are the same right across the UK and there are no easy fixes. The Whippet Coaches management team accept that reliability at present isn’t to the high standards they want to provide to their customers, but they are confident that the measures they are putting in place will soon lead to noticeable improvements. The Combined Authority will continue to monitor the situation and work with them to improve reliability.
Customers can contact Whippet Coaches direct to request a refund of taxi fares if a service is cancelled. Alternatively, they can contact us at and we can liaise with them. A copy of the taxi receipt should be provided in both cases.”