BUS operator Stagecoach has conceded that planned changes to the bus service between St Neots and Huntingdon will mean that the Offords, Buckden Marina and the Montagu Street area of Eynesbury will lose their bus services when St Neots-Huntingdon services are rationalised in the summer.

Hunts Post reader Joshua Welby, who lives in Wyboston, has complained that he will no longer be able to get to St Neots railway station outside peak rail times to collect his favourite newspaper.

He added that the 'Love's Farm loop' would no longer be served, unless by the new X$ service that will boost the X5 to provide a 15-minute frequency between St Neots and Cambridge.

Mr Welby said: "The new Route 18 will replace Route Citi 4B in Eltisley, near Papworth - the only thing I like is the return of the Route 18 between Cambridge and St Neots, but it will no longer serve Papworth as current Route Citi 4B.

"Route 20 between Cambridge and Cambourne will now be withdrawn because of this change."

"With all these changes there will be a lot of people being disappointed, especially people who get on and off the bus on the Loves Farm Loop, people with young children in pushchairs or buggies and the elderly.

"The people who will suffer at Buckden Marina and the Offords are again the elderly, and the same goes for Montagu Street, St Neots. A lot of people get on and off the bus at these places, except for St Neots railway station, where it is mostly not used by many people during the day, outside of peak times."

Stagecoach managing director Andy Campbell said that, while the new X4 would not service the railway station outside the morning and evening rail peaks, it would serve Love's Farm, which will in future be connected to the station by a new pedestrian footbridge with full disabled access.

He concede th\at Mr Welby was correct about the Offords, Buckden Marina & Montagu Street, but he was clearly puzzled by some of Mr Welby's other claims.

"The 18 doesn't go to St Neots, and the Citi 4 doesn't currently serve Papworth," he said. "The 20 doesn't operate between Cambridge and Cambourne. It links Fenstanton to the guided busway.

" The X4 will also offer a more direct service from Cambourne to Cambridge."

Mr Cambell also accepted that changes to services between Huntingdon and Peterborough, if guided buses from Cambridge were extended to Peterborough in the summer, would impact on current hourly local services in Alconbury and Alconbury Weston.