There were 177 buses cancelled during TT fortnight, despite a former minister telling the House of Keys that all scheduled services were fulfilled.
The figures have been released after an FoI request from Gef.
Daily Facebook posts about bus cancellations became a regular feature during the run up and early days of TT until they were suddenly stopped.
However, when quizzed on this by MHKs on June 14, former DoI minister Tim Crookall said that ‘the full service was delivered and many extra journeys operated over that period’.
This was disputed at the time by Douglas North MHK John Wannenburgh, who said he was ‘aware that a number of service duties were cancelled and not communicated through the social media pages’.
Bizarrely at the time Mr Crookall said that delays caused by road closures had led to a round trip from Douglas to Ramsey, via Peel, taking four and a half hours, ‘so people did think their buses had been cancelled’.
He added: ‘I am told that all buses ran, but they might have been late and at some stage if you are waiting for that bus from Douglas to Ramsey and you are on the last leg, it might have been 40 minutes late, but there would have been other buses that were late beforehand.
‘So I am told that although there were delays – big delays in some circumstances – all the buses ran when they were supposed to.’
The Glenfaba and Peel MHK even referenced Mr Wannenburgh’s assertion that buses were cancelled, telling members ‘we will take that up at a later date’. But, at the time of publication, no corrections have ever been made.
Mr Wannenburgh then gave him a final chance to change his reply, but again Mr Crookall said: ‘As far as I am led to believe all the published services that were in the timetable as published on May 9 were delivered, albeit some of them were obviously very late, as I said, when it is taking four and a half hours for doing a round trip.’
However, as our FoI revealed, there were 177 cancelled services during TT, meaning Mr Crookall either was given false info by his then department or he misled the house.
The worst hit route for cancellations were buses in the south of the island, with 92 cancelled services. While these are some of the most regularly serviced areas, they are on routes which, with the exception of where the services would normally enter Governor’s Hill, have no contact with the TT course itself.
Saturday June 11, the day when the Senior TT was run, there were 37 cancelled services, with the following day seeing 25. Saturday June 4 also saw 28 services cancelled, Monday June 6 saw 21 and the Monday and Tuesday of Practice Week, May 30 and 31, had 15 and 13 respectively.
We put our FoI to Mr Crookall and asked why he had given the replies he did to MHKs, but he referred us to the DoI.
At the time of publishing the DoI had not been able to provide a reply, but the offer is still open.