Bus company seeks new recruits as sickness causes more cancellations

Borders Buses is stepping up efforts to recruit new trainee drivers – as sickness levels continue to decimate services.

By Paul Kelly
Wednesday, 8th June 2022, 10:47 am
Updated Wednesday, 8th June 2022, 10:47 am
A shortage of bus drivers has led to several cancellations. Photo: Bill McBurnie.
A shortage of bus drivers has led to several cancellations. Photo: Bill McBurnie.

Driver absences have forced the cancellation of numerous services over the last couple of weeks.

Due to driver sickness several services were again cancelled today, Monday, June 6, including the x62 from Galashiels to Peebles, the 73 from Galashiels to Selkirk Bannerfield, the 68 service, Galashiels to Jedburgh, and the 67 from St Boswells to Kelso.

The company has passed on apologies for the continued inconvenience caused by these cancellations.

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But judging from comments on the bus company’s Facebook page some members of the public are beginning to lose patience.

“Absolute joke. Bus service is a disgrace,” posted Vicki Sealey, with Gordon Cameron Robb adding: “People have a right to moan. Myself and another parent have just taken two cars full of students to Borders College at our own expense – it’s not the first time either.”

There was online support, however, with Lynda Healey Thomas posting: “The drivers are doing their best under very difficult conditions. They are already giving up their days off, driving longer hours and dealing with the disgruntled public.”

Meanwhile, the company has issued an appeal for new recruits to come forward to bolster driver numbers.

A company spokesperson said: “Not only is a bus driver a career for life, it gives you varied work content where no day is the same. It allows you to see some great sights and become a key part of the local community.”

The recruitment drive also includes endorsements from current staff, including Mike Riwa, from Galashiels, who says: “I used to be a joiner but I love driving a bus. The banter with customers is something I enjoy most about my job.”

William McCairney, from St Boswells, adds: “I worked in horticulture for 20 years but I love the great atmosphere at Borders Buses.”