After three years, bus shelter in Northamptonshire village finally gets a bus

Ted Thompson led a petition to get a bus service reinstated in Cold Ashby
Ted Thompson led a petition to get a bus service reinstated in Cold Ashby

Public transport users in Northamptonshire are celebrating after news a bus service is to be introduced in their village for the first time in three years.

Cold Ashby, which has around 300 residents, was served by a regular bus into the Northampton until 2011, when its subsidy from the county council was stopped and the route was omitted from the timetable.

Residents launched a petition to see it reinstated soon after because the number 60 service from Welford to Northampton passed just a half-mile away on the A5119 six times a day.

Following three years of struggling to make it into town, the number 60 Centrebus service is now set to make a once-weekly stop in the village on a Saturday from September 6.

Villager Ted Thompson, 78, led the campaign and said most of Cold Ashby’s senior citizens would have preferred the one bus to arrive in the midweek.

“But it’s a start,” the former Northampton College invigilator said, “for years we’ve had a bus shelter here and no buses.”

In 2011 Northamptonshire County Council brought in the County Connect scheme, which intended to provide transport to rural communities not on a regular bus route.

But Mr Thompson said many had struggled with the scheme, which is subject to availability and in some cases requires bookings to be made a week in advance.

The Cold Ashby bus was used infrequently, he said, and the petition to see it reinstated consisted of just 14 names.

But for those in the village who could not drive, it was a lifeline.

He said: “Our argument was that the number 60 stops at Naseby and picks very few people up. Why can’t it stop in Cold Ashby and pick a few people up?

“We believe it will only add three minutes to the overall journey.”