A “badly needed” Sunday bus link connecting Otley and Ilkley with Skipton will be restored this Easter, more than seven years after it stopped running.
A prominent local public transport advocate has welcomed the announcement the X84 bus service will once more run between Leeds and Skipton on Sundays.
The X84 through-service to Addingham and Skipton on Sundays and evenings was halted in 2006, despite claims it hit Dales tourism and Wharfedale people who work or study in Skipton.
The bus, operated by First, instead turns around at Ilkley and heads back to Leeds.
Although local operators have been running services linking Ilkley and Skipton on Sundays in recent years, the return of the X84 through-service has been welcomed.
Director of the Dales Dales and Bowland Community Interest Company, former Yorkshire Dales Society chairman Colin Speakman, says the change sees a badly needed Sunday and Bank Holiday service restored for Wharfedale residents to Skipton and the Dales.
He said: “Getting the X84 back through to and from Skipton on Sundays is great news for Wharfedale, Skipton and the Yorkshire Dales.
“We think it will be very popular with older people able to use their senior passes but it will open up many more journey opportunities for people living in the Wharfedale area to the Yorkshire Dales at a budget price.”
Agreement has been reached between the Dales and Bowland CIC and operators First Leeds to include the X84 as a full part of the very successful Sunday DalesBus network.
A new ticket, the First Dales Rover ticket, costing £11, can be bought on the X84 or on any connecting First Leeds bus through to Ilkley or Skipton.
This will be then valid on any DalesBus service to Bolton Abbey, Malham, Grassington, Kettlewell, Hawes, Ingleton, Pateley Bridge, Fountains Abbey or even into Swaledale.
First Leeds has also agreed to run its first bus from Leeds to Skipton ten minutes earlier, leaving Leeds at 8am, Otley at 8.40am and Ilkley at 9am, to make the Sunday morning connection with the famous Settle Carlisle line in Skipton.
Cravenlink bus services, which currently run between Ilkley and Skipton on Sundays, will no longer service Draughton, but all go to Skipton via Bolton Abbey, while the Malham service will go direct from Harrogate via Blubberhouses, but will connect with the new service X84 to and from Wharfedale at Skipton.
Visit wymetro.com or dalesbus.org, or call MetroLine on (0113) 2457676 for more information.