‘We’ll appeal closure threat’ promise directors of Fenland coach and bus operators as Traffic Commissioners deadline looms

Emblings coaches, Guyhirn.Picture: Steve Williams.

Emblings coaches, Guyhirn.Picture: Steve Williams. - Credit: Archant

Directors of two Fenland bus companies threatened with closure by the industry’s regulator have launched an appeal to save their businesses.

Emblings coaches, Guyhirn.Picture: Steve Williams.

Emblings coaches, Guyhirn.Picture: Steve Williams. - Credit: Archant

Emblings and Judds Travel of Guyhirn announced today they will fight the ruling by the Traffic Commissioner that could put them – and 12 employees- out of work.

In a statement today, the directors of Judds Travels Ltd said they were “extremely disappointed by the Traffic Commissioners decision to revoke the operators’ licence of Judd’s Travel Ltd

“As a business we have always made every effort to provide an excellent standard of service to the people in the local area, our schools contracts service, our private hire, our holidays and day excursions.

“The Traffic Commissioner raised a number of issues at a public inquiry and efforts were made to address these issues

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“Although the Traffic Commissioner considered improvements had not been made to his satisfaction, he decided that the company could continue operating until June 9.”

The statement added: “The company will be appealing the decision by the Traffic Commissioner to revoke the operators’ licence.”

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Emblings Coaches and Judds Travel of Guyhirn also provides home to school and college transport on behalf of Cambridgeshire County Council.

A council spokesman said: “In response to the judgement made by the Traffic Commissioner, both been told that their contracts with the council will be terminated June 3.

“The routes have already been put out to tender, and we hope to have new operators in place by the end of May.

“This would comply within the timescales allowed by the Traffic Commissioner in making his decision to revoke their licences.”

At a public inquiry in Cambridge the Traffic Commissioners also disqualified the directors from holding a PCV O-licence indefinitely.

One of the routes operated by the company is the 701 from Peterborough to Coates; it is a commercial service and receives no subsidies.

The issues that brought the companies before the Traffic Commissioners began with a maintenance inspection a year ago. The Traffic Commissioners met in September and commented upon record keeping standards that fell below the necessary standards.

Director Mark Judd had told the earlier hearing he accepted there were issues outstanding and had spread himself too thinly.

The hearing was postponed but areas of concern – including brake inspections- were not remedied within the time scales allowed.

New brake testing equipment was discussed but not bought and the commissioners, meeting last week, felt that with the financial information they held it was unlikely this would still be purchased.

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