Vital bus services will continue when current operator retires

The anxious wait is over for bus passengers as Transport for Greater Manchester confirms vital local services will continue to run when the current operator retires.

There was uncertainty about what would happen to the 12 services provided by Jim Stones Coaches when it was announced owners Jim and Joan Stones wished to retire and sell the company.

The bus services will be provided by a new operator from next month

The bus services will be provided by a new operator from next month

TfGM has been working to find replacement operators for the services, which serve areas such as Crankwood, Hag Fold and Lowton, and they will now take over from Sunday, April 19.

Four of the services will continue to run on a commercial basis and the rest will still be subsidised by TfGM.

TfGM committee chairman Coun Mark Aldred said: “Buses are a vital lifeline for many passengers across Greater Manchester, providing millions of journeys each year and accounting for three-quarters of all public transport journeys.

“This is why it is vital that we help support bus users and, where possible, maintain transport links in areas where it is a strong social need.

“I’m delighted that, on this occasion, TfGM was able to find other operators to maintain these key links and I would like to personally thank Jim Stones for his contribution to public transport over three decades.”

Jim Stones Coaches has operated local bus services in the Leigh area for more than 33 years

Full details of the replacement services will be available at