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Local outcry over school bus contract

MERIDEN mums and dads are baffled after a popular coach company lost the contract to take their children to school.

MERIDEN mums and dads are baffled after a popular coach company lost the contract to take their children to school.

Ken’s Coaches has been running pupils to Meriden CofE Primary for over 30-years and has built up a rapport with local people.

But last month, Solihull Council revealed that it would not be renewing the contract and Hollywood Travel took over the service this week.

Lisa Kennedy, whose ten-year-old daughter Harriet uses the bus, said that many parents had been upset by the change.

“The company goes the extra mile. They’ve been running so long, that some of the parents used to use the bus themselves when they were children,” said the 38-year-old.

“Their contract stopped before half-term and on the last day, many of the parents bought presents with them for the driver.”

Her friend Katherine Lynch used the bus when she was a girl and now her daughter has started in reception.

“We were only told at the last minute and I think it’s a shame that the company has had no recognition after 30 years,” she said.

The Coventry-based firm said that it was due to have a meeting with the council and didn’t want to comment at this stage.

Councillor Andy Hodgson, cabinet member for resources, said that the council had been through a nine-month tendering process.

“We are legally obliged to go to tender when a contract of this value is due to expire.

“After a detailed evaluation, Hollywood Travel were awarded the contract and we are confident that they will provide a friendly service for all our bus travelling school children.”

 

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