Lochaber MSP speaks with Stagecoach over Fort depot threat

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Lochaber MSP Kate Forbes has urged Stagecoach bosses ‘to keep all options open’ after the bus operator announced it was reviewing all of its operations in the Fort William area.

Yesterday (Thursday February 22), Ms Forbes spoke to Mark Whitelocks, Stagecoach’s managing director for the north of Scotland, and sought clarity over the future of bus services in the region.

Given the infamous tailbacks during the tourist season across Fort William, Ms Forbes also said she was keen that more people were encouraged to use public transport.

‘It is important to expand bus services and routes, rather than reduce them. I have spoken to the managing director of Stagecoach’s operations in Lochaber to ask them to consider all options as they undergo a review of operations,’ she said.

‘It is also important that staff are supported at every stage because not only are they facing uncertainty but it is often staff on the frontline who take the flak of changes in services.’

And she added: ‘We should be getting more people out of their cars and into buses at a time like this, not reducing bus use.

‘There are already challenges of congestion in Fort William and improving public transport would get more people out of their cars.

‘I have asked Stagecoach to keep me updated on the progress of their review.’