Lanarkshire bus company hits out at First’s tactics

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A Lanarkshire bus company has accused First Glasgow of trying to prevent them from offering competition.

JMB Travel launched its new 240 service linking Birkenshaw, Viewpark, Bellshill, Motherwell, Wishaw and Cleland on September 25.

Ten days earlier First extended its ‘Motherwell Local Zone’ ticket to include Bellshill, Burnhead and Birkenshaw and increased the frequency of its own 240 service.

JMB service delivery manager Max Cairns said: “Our 240 service was introduced after many requests from members of the public in the Viewpark and Bellshill area who were fed up with the unreliable, sporadic service which First Glasgow provided.

“First extended their ‘Motherwell Local Zone’ ticket the week before our service started, offering lower ticket prices that were previously not available when competition didn’t exist on this route.

“Coupled with the fact that First are now running up to six additional vehicles of their own 240 service between Motherwell and Birkenshaw, it is clear they are trying to ensure our small, local, family owned business don’t manage to get their foot in the door.”

John Gorman, head of operations at First Glasgow, responded: “First Glasgow has no interest in commenting on the actions of other operators, but can confirm our 240 service continues to provide a frequent, value for money service in the Motherwell and Bellshill area seven days a week.”