Bid to stop Drumgrew being a bridge too far

11-07-2015 Picture Jamie Forbes. Drumgrew Bridge near Tweacher.
11-07-2015 Picture Jamie Forbes. Drumgrew Bridge near Tweacher.

Commuters left marooned by a bus firm’s decision to axe a link between Kirkintilloch and Cumbernauld could be rescued by transport chiefs.

The shut-down of the Drumgrew Bridge for repairs has posed a travel nightmare for people across a wide area for nine months, and one local bus service – the o47 from Kirkintilloch to Monklands Hospital – is being sharply cut back.

Drumgrew Bridge.

Drumgrew Bridge.

Operator DA Coaches will now cease to run the Cumbernauld to Kirkintilloch leg of the journey, and will instead only run from Cumbernauld to Monklands.

This is said to be because the firm has been unable to find cash backing to run a replacement bus service from Kirkintilloch to Cumbernauld.

However this week politicians Jamie Hepburn MSP (Cumbernauld and Kilsyth) and Stuart McDonald MSP (Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East) said correspondence from Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT) pointed to a possible solution.

SPT aims to broker a deal with North Lanarkshire Council, East Dunbartonshire Council and Network Rail to fund a replacement bus service between Cumbernauld and Kirkintilloch.

In the short term they hope to put in place a temporary contract until the longer term funding is sorted out.

Stuart McDonald said: “SPT are working hard to ensure those who rely on public transport to get between Cumbernauld and Kirkintilloch, particularly those who use this service to get to work, won’t be left stranded and an interim bus service is likely to be put in place.