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This was the official website of the Colchester Bus Users Support Group (C-BUS).

C-BUS was formed in 2003 to give a voice to bus users in the Colchester area, and aimed to act as a link between passengers, the bus companies, and the local authorities.

Regrettably C-BUS has had to be ‘put into sleep mode’ in 2021 owing to the combination of the following factors: 

     Membership diminishing through ageing and deaths, combined with the unwillingness of the new generation to become involved with traditional formalised paid membership organisations and meetings.

     The facebook group started in 2020 to provide information in a more up to date forum having to be abandoned following gross unpleasantnesses at the start of the covid epidemic.

     The decreasing willingness of CBC and ECC to listen to ‘stakeholders’, in great contrast to the 2000s.



There is now (since July 2021) a new COLCHESTER BOROUGH BUS USER facebook bus information group, run by other parties who have good access to operator information. This covers:

Timetable changes (pending)

Planned roadworks diversions bus details

Daily updates on ‘today’s operating problems’

And, currently, full details of journeys being cancelled because of the national bus driver shortage.

Clacton area services are covered also.


The other pages on this website have now been eliminated. You can still contact us (peterkay.essex@btinternet.com) if you want background guidance on how to deal with the operators or (increasingly difficult!) the councils on your bus problems. The guidance below summarises the general position which many are not fully aware of.



The system under which bus services are operated in the UK remains basically as that established in 1986.

Outside of London, the majority of services are run on an entirely commercial basis by large national/international companies – represented in Colchester by First, Arriva, and Go-Ahead (Hedingham/Chambers) – or smaller local private operators.

The rest (around 15% of journeys in Essex) are supported by the County Councils. Their services comprise:

(1) evening journeys on many routes that are run commercially in the daytime (2) the Sunday service on routes that are run commercially during the week (3) the whole of the journeys on non-profitable rural  (50, 77, 80, 81, 82, 83, 92, 105, 174/5) or minor town (4, 11, 15, 63) routes. These ECC-supported journeys are run on contract by the ordinary bus operators and the ‘ECC’ buses are not in any way physically distinguishable from ‘commercial’ buses.

Colchester has more commercial evening and Sunday buses than average: the whole service on the 61, 62/62b, and 65 is commercial.

Timetable leaflets are now only produced by Hedingham / Chambers. 

The County Council has no control at all over the timings of (or fares on) commercial services. Conversely, all decisions on supported services are purely a County Council matter.

(Colchester Borough Council has no involvement with bus services except in respect of some bus shelters, and the so-called  ‘Bus Station’ Waiting Room and toilets).


Bus stop infrastructure is a County Council responsibility (except that some shelters are owned by the Borough or Parish councils). Any problems with or damage to bus stops (including the timetable frames) should be reported to ECC via the same website link as used for potholes etc.

The County Council also now decides on the location of bus stops.


These are now all produced by Essex County Council in a standard format. (Bus operators are not allowed to put up their own information in the bus stop frames). After March 2020 they were abandoned (the old incorrect ones being left up for over a year). Production resumed in summer 2021 but has now faltered again.




Recent Posts

Hello world

Welcome to the first blog post of the Colchester Bus Users’ Group. Here we will write about our meetings, and provide up to date information regarding the activities of the Group. It is our intention to provide regular updates about bus issues in the Colchester area.

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