Bus service launched to help Teesport workers

TEES Valley Mayor Ben Houchen and Middlesbrough Mayor Andy Preston have helped launch a new bus service to ensure local people working in Teesport-based businesses can get to and from their jobs.

Mr Preston raised concerns about the lack of bus routes serving Teesport, with workers from sites such as the Tesco distribution warehouse commuting to work, with many working 24-hour shifts.

The situation has also reduced opportunities for jobless carless workers who might otherwise have attended interviews, training or apprenticeships on site.

Mr Houchen and the Combined Authority have now appointed bus operator Stagecoach to provide a new bus service. The new route is being backed by £58,000 in funding from the mayor, with the aim that it will eventually become fully commercially viable.

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The service, numbered 101, runs between Middlesbrough bus station and Teesport three times a day via Thorntree Job Centre, Eston and South Bank, leaving town at 5am, 1pm and 9pm to align with shifts.

In addition to single fares, passengers will also be able to take advantage of cheap weekly tickets, with discounted tickets for those under 19.

Mr Houchen said: “When I first heard about this issue, I wasted no time asking the bus operators for solutions and would like to thank Andy for raising the issue. problem with me. There is no point in helping businesses create jobs in our region if people here do not have access to them.

“I am delighted that this new service is now operational and that those who do not have a car can get to and from work faster and easier than ever. We have worked closely with Stagecoach in the past on projects like our Tees Flex on-demand bus service, and are pleased to provide the crucial funding needed to launch this service.

“Alongside Tees Flex and our Wheels 2 Work electric motorcycle rental program, it’s another way we’re helping people in need get to work without breaking the bank, giving them the local transportation network they deserve..”

Mr Preston said: “This fantastic service will help more people in Middlesbrough get to work hassle-free and hassle-free, and make it even more likely to find employment in Teesport businesses.

“I am delighted that we have been able to find a solution to allow our employees to move and improve their lives, and I look forward to hearing about the future success of this route. »

One person to benefit from the new service is Richard Dowson, 34, from Thorntree, who works at Tesco Distribution in Teesport.

He said: “I have cycled to work since I started four years ago so this bus is a big help especially now in the miserable winter months. I often had to use a taxi which costs more one way than what I pay for the weekly ticket now!”

David Parker, Commercial Director of Stagecoach North East, said: “We are delighted to be working alongside Mayor Houchen and the Tees Valley Combined Authority to provide another transport solution for our region, following the successful introduction of Tees Flex. .

“Our bus services provide vital links for local populations and are essential in connecting people to day-to-day employment opportunities.

“The new 101 service creates a direct link to these jobs from many parts of East Middlesbrough, as well as Eston, South Bank and Grangetown. We have also introduced a new special £12 weekly ticket, exclusive to the 101 service, to complement our wider range of great fare offers.

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Melvin Z. Madore