05 June 2008

Louth Depot to Close

Stagecoach East Midlands has announced it will be closing its Louth Depot at the end of August due to 'poor financial performance'. The company says most of the local bus services operated in the Louth area will be largely unaffected, including Service 10 between Mablethorpe, Louth and Lincoln, Service 51 between Louth and Grimsby, and Service 41 Louth Town Service.

The buses operating these services will be transferred to run from Skegness and Grimsby Depot respectively.

Stagecoach East Midlands has given notice to Lincolnshire County Council on nine school contract services to terminate at the end of the current school year. This work will be re-tendered to other bus operators by the local authority.

The closure will affect 39 staff based at Louth Depot, mainly bus drivers, fitters, and cleaners.
The transfer of work will create new posts at Skegness and Grimsby Depots and all employees are being offered alternative employment at these neighbouring garages.

The company says a change in travel patterns over recent years has meant the amount of market day and off peak services in the Louth area has reduced, and in most cases isolated rural communities are now served by demand responsive Call Connect buses.

This has created a situation where most of Louth Depot's work is based on school services, which only run for few hours in the morning and afternoon for 39 weeks of the year.

After a poor financial performance in 2007/8 the management team at Lincoln were unable to justify a business case to support the continued overhead costs of maintaining a depot at Louth.
Stagecoach East Midlands announced the closure to staff yesterday, Tuesday, and the company is now working with trade unions to relocate staff and transfer operations to Skegness and Grimsby from 1st September.

The depot in Orme Lane, dates from 1947, having been built by Wight's Bus Service which was subsequently taken over by the Lincolnshire Road Car Co in 1951.