Future of Coasthopper secured until Autumn 2015

Good news on the future of the popular Coasthopper service has been announced by Norfolk County Council - see below for the full press release issued this week...

Coasthopper bus in Hunstanton.

The future of a popular coastal bus service has been secured, following agreement between Norfolk County Council and Norfolk Green.

The Coasthopper service runs from King’s Lynn to Cromer half hourly in the summer and hourly in the winter, via Hunstanton, Wells and Sheringham. Last year the service carried over 500,000 passengers.

Longstanding investment in Coasthopper by both the Council and the bus company, building the route from scratch, has provided the platform for the summer service to be operated on a commercial basis. Norfolk Green will operate the summer period without council subsidy. The County Council will still invest in the winter service to provide journeys all year around.

The decision was finalised following a public consultation about the service in November 2013.

The agreement between the two parties means that the Coasthopper service will continue to run at the current frequency levels for both the summer and winter until at least autumn 2015, with discussions planned for future developments.

Toby Coke, Chairman of Norfolk County Council’s Environment, Development and Transport Committee, said: “The Coasthopper represents a vital means of transport for many residents in West Norfolk and across the North Norfolk coast, so I’m very pleased that between us and Norfolk Green, we’ve been able to secure its future for the medium term.

“The fact that the County Council has managed to make savings in its contribution to the service while allowing the route and frequency of the Coasthopper to remain unaffected for at least another year means this is not just good news for passengers but the Norfolk taxpayer as well.

“Our next step is to investigate viable options to allow the Coasthopper to continue to run beyond autumn 2015 and we are hoping to secure further private investment.”

Andrew Dyer, MD of Norfolk Green, said "Coasthopper is a superb example of partnership working between public and private sectors. The effort and investment put in by both parties since the service started in 1996 has produced the success story that we see today.

"I am delighted that we have been able to secure the future of the service with the current summer and winter timetables until late next year and I am confident that the route will have a bright future beyond that."