Local Link minibus services to change in Rochdale and Trafford

Changes to Local Link services across Rochdale and Trafford are set to be introduced later this month – with alternative bus services being put in place to ensure customers can still reach their destinations.

From Sunday 24th April, a new bus route will replace the existing Local Link service to Kingsway Business Park in Rochdale, while the Middleton Local Link will no longer serve Kingsway. In Trafford, new hours of operation will be introduced for the Local Link service operating to and from Partington and Dunham Massey.

Local Link is a service provided by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) which provides minibuses to residents living in areas underserved by public transport services.

The Kingsway Local Link route has been a well-used service since its introduction, but space on the minibuses is limited, and in some cases passengers have been unable to travel due to capacity issues.

In response to this issue - and to boost capacity on the route - TfGM has identified an opportunity to introduce a traditional fixed-route bus service to replace the Kingsway Local Link service which will offer an hourly and daily service between Rochdale and the business park from the early mornings until the evenings.

  • The new R6 service run by Transdev will provide an hourly daily service from Rochdale between 0536 and 2136.  The service covers the shift time access from Rochdale into Kingsway and gives a much-improved service to the Ladyhouse and Pennine Drive areas of Milnrow replacing the current R4.
  • The existing R7 service will be rerouted via Kingsway Business Park.  The service will also be extended from Castleton to Middleton.  The new timetable will provide an hourly daily service with departures from Middleton times to meet shift start times at Kingsway.
  • The Middleton Local Link service is also being changed to no longer include the Kingsway element, meaning passengers will not be able to use Local Link to travel from Middleton to Kingsway

In addition, changes to Local Link in the Partington and Dunham Massey areas will also come into effect which will see the daytime service withdrawn due to the availability of other general bus services.

Any residents who find it difficult to access the general bus network due to mobility issues may be eligible for Ring and Ride, a door-to-door accessible minibus service. For more information, visit https://tfgm.com/public-transport/ring-and-ride-minibuses.

The new hours of Local Link operation in Partington will be:

  • Monday to Saturday: 5am to 8.30am, and 6.30pm to midnight
  • Sundays and bank holidays: 5am to 11pm.

Alternative services available in the area to continue making daytime journeys from/to Partington are:

  • Service 5A: Altrincham - Sinderland Green - Partington - Warrington. From 24th April this service (renamed 5) will also serve Dunham Massey village, Warburton Rope and Anchor
  • Service 280: (from 24th April) Dunham Massey, Warburton, Partington, Carrington and Sale (replaces the current 260 service)
  • Service 255: Partington - Carrington - Stretford - Piccadilly Gardens
  • Service 247: Altrincham - Partington - Carrington - The Trafford Centre

Nick Roberts, TfGM’s Head of Services and Commercial Development, said: “Local Link has served the areas surrounding Kingsway Business Park in Rochdale, and Partington in Trafford, for many years, and I’d like to thank our passengers for using our services.

“The Kingsway Local Link service was introduced when bus passenger numbers were low, and demand for the service had yet to be established. Since then, people living across Rochdale have enjoyed access to Kingsway through the service, but as demand has increased we have taken the opportunity to introduce a network of fixed route services.

“This new service will offer more capacity, without the need to prebook journey, and will pave the way for a wider range of benefits for the Rochdale area as a whole, including twice as many buses to Hollingworth Lake, twice as many buses to Milnrow and a wider network of evening services across the borough.

“Local Link will also continue to have a presence in Partington in the early mornings, evenings and every Sunday.But the day-time service is being withdrawn to avoid duplications with the wider bus network which offers residents a range of services in and out of the town.

“These changes, together with alterations to the general bus network, will ensure that both Local Link and traditional bus routes can be made sustainable in the longer term.”

For more information, visit https://tfgm.com/public-transport/bus/local-link/service-changes.

Contact Information

Niall Griffiths

Communications Officer (Our Network)

Transport for Greater Manchester