BUS operator Stagecoach has abandoned its optimistic slogan about the St Ives-Cambridge guided busway and re-branded its 20-strong £3million fleet of bio-diesel vehicles. For a year, the air-conditioned green buses have teased the travelling public with t

BUS operator Stagecoach has abandoned its optimistic slogan about the St Ives-Cambridge guided busway and re-branded its 20-strong £3million fleet of bio-diesel vehicles.

For a year, the air-conditioned green buses have teased the travelling public with the slogan: "I'll be on the busway soon. Will you?"

No longer. Now the buses ask plaintively: "Will I be on the busway soon?"

The brand-new buses were delivered a year ago, when contractors BAM Nuttall were due to hand over the longest guided busway in the world to Cambridgeshire County Council for trial running and driver-training.

Public services should have started in April last year, and two further supposed starting dates have come and gone since, the most recent being November 29 last year. Now, neither the council nor the contractor can say when the public will get access, as they quarrel over who should foot the bill for a huge cost overrun on a project that was supposed to have been delivered for £116.5million.

Stagecoach has decided to go public about its frustration over the delay.

Managing director Andy Campbell told The Hunts Post: "There's no indication when it's going to be resolved. We had the previous advertisement on for 12 months, so we thought it probably needed changing. We've adopted a light-hearted approach."

He added: "We have a whole team of dedicated staff anxious to get onto the guideway. They are even more frustrated than I am."

A spokesman for Cambridgeshire County Council said: "Stagecoach shared their plans to reword the slogan on their buses with us at a recent meeting. Obviously, we share their frustration at the ongoing delay in opening the busway, but Stagecoach, the public and ourselves are entirely in the hands of the contractor BAM Nuttall as to when they complete works and the service can open.