PASSENGERS are losing confidence in a village bus service following a series of breakdowns and problems with time-keeping.

The village hopper service runs between Pershore and Evesham stopping at a number of Vale villages along the way.

The service was first introduced by Worcestershire County Council in September 2011 to bring together a number of bus routes and school services that were no longer sustainable.

But Pershore Town Councillor Julian Palfrey said there are many problems with the bus service.

“Passengers are losing confidence in the bus service,” he said. “We have so many problems with the buses. There have been so many breakdowns and compromises of safety and hopeless time keeping.”

A recent accident involving the village hopper service took place on Friday, September 14, 2012. Six elderly people were rescued from the crash involving the village hopper bus and a van at Hinton-on-the-Green but no one was injured in the accident.

Coun Val Wood added: “There is no information on the buses, it would be good to have time tables on them.” The service is contracted to Worcester bus company LMS Travel but under the terms of their contract with Worcestershire County Council they were unable to comment.

Chris Holloway, transport planning and review officer, speaking on behalf of the county council and LMS Travel said: “We are currently reviewing the village hopper service.

“Feedback we have received so far has been positive about the service, the operator and the drivers.

“We are not aware of a high number of breakdowns being reported to us, but if residents could log the dates and times issues occur and forward them to the county council we will look into it.

“We are working in collaboration with all the parish councils through which the service operates to prepare for the changes to the service, and we intend to work with them to provide local information through the parishes themselves to local residents.”