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Over 3,600 passengers used the new Wakefield
MetroConnect FreeCityBus in its first week of operation.
Developed by Metro, in partnership with Wakefield Council,
Wakefield FreeCityBus was launched on Monday 23 April. .
Running every ten minutes from 7.30am to 7.00pm Monday to Friday
and from 8.30am to 5.00pm on Saturdays the 2.7 mile route's 12
stops will link key locations around Wakefield City Centre
including the city's Westgate and Kirkgate train stations, the bus
station, shops and retail parks, the Ridings Centre, Ings Road and
the Cathedral and Westgate Retail and Leisure Parks.
Three, clearly branded, low-floor 29-seat single-deck buses with
CCTV coverage have been acquired for the service, which will reach
parts of Wakefield not currently accessible by public transport,
operating initially operate on a six month trial basis.
"This trial service has been set up with
Wakefield Council following the success of Metro's hugely popular
Leeds FreeCityBus, which has carried well over one
million people and the Huddersfield FreeTownBus
which just last week carried its 100,000th passenger," said Metro
Chairman, Cllr Stanley King.
"I'm sure it will quickly become a highly popular and
recognisable feature of the Wakefield Cityscape.
"FreeCityBus is one of several exciting transport opportunities
in the pipeline for Wakefield District," continued Councillor King.
"Our £14.5m Castleford Interchange, which will bring together
the town's bus and rail stations in a state-of-the-art facility, is
in the detailed planning stage. And Network Rail recently announced
that it has earmarked a £1.4m contribution to the
redevelopment of Wakefield Westgate Rail Station.
At the service's official civic launch, which was attended by
The Bishop of Wakefield, and the Deputy Mayor of Wakefield,
breakfast was followed by speeches from Cllr Stanley King, Chairman
of Metro, Cllr Phil Dobson, Deputy Leader of Wakefield Council and
Margaret Wood, Chairman of First Wakefield, who then went for a
trip around the new service.
heard how FreeCityBus will provide an ideal, free link to key parts
of the City centre for local people and visitors arriving in or
travelling through Wakefield by train, bus or coach, reducing the
need for them to bring their cars into the City centre.
During the lead up to the launch date of Monday 23 April, Metro
was out and about in Wakefield City centre providing information
about the new service and distributing leaflets about the
More details of the new service, including a
downloadable map of the route.