BUS USERS say they are being left stranded and subsequently running late for work after a contract change in a bus service.
From September 2, Wardle Transport has been operating the service from Leek to Cheadle after they were awarded the contract from Staffordshire County Council.
The service had been operated by Clowes Coaches before.
However, bus users have expressed concerns that buses have been driving past at stops and not even turning up at all on some occasions.
Val Stanner, aged 57 from Cheadle, said: "I use the Number 236 which is supposed to be in Cheadle for 8am.
"However, the first day the contracts changed the bus did not turn up at all. With this I didn't get into work until 10.45am that morning as I then had to arrange someone to bring me into Leek."
Val said that the next day, no bus turned up again and she had to find alternative transport.
She said: "My husband then got on the phone to both Wardle's and the county council about this.
Wardle's said that the bus had broken down on both of the days.
"On Monday the bus did not stop at all for us at the Cheadle stop.
"I could see that the bus looked quite full but I later heard that the driver did stop in Kingsley to pick some people up even though no one had got off.
"Work have been fine about the times I have been late due to the bus problem but it just can't go on."
Val who has been working in Leek for 18 years added: "I've not had any problems like this before - yes there has been the odd problems like when it has snowed.
"It's a simple route. The price going up for a return ticket from £3.40 to £5 is another issue.
"I have now brought a monthly bus pass for £55 which does work out cheaper than buying a ticket every day - but it won't work out any cheaper if the buses don't turn up."
Val's husband Keith Stanner is calling for the county council to give the contract back to Clowes Coaches.
Mr Stanner said: "What is happening is disgraceful. Clowes were perfect and had a personal touch.
"It is high time people stood up to the county council. They are clearly not interested in the people they serve. This service can no longer be trusted."
District councillor Linda Malyon whose Ipstones ward runs in the middle of the Leek to Cheadle route said: "I have had numerous complaints since the change over in operators for this service.
"People are very angry about the large increase in fares and that the buses run late on several occasions.
"Clowes Coaches were local and did an excellent job. The contract should never have been taken off them.
"Due to price hike it is now restricting people from going out. Also it is making people late for work at a time jobs are not easy to come by."
Another bus user, who lives in Ipstones but wished not to be named, said: "Since the route has changed contracts, a lot of the buses have not been turning up."
Staffordshire County Councillor, Simon Tagg, Cabinet Member for Transport and Connected County said: "We are aware that there have been issues on these services and will be meeting with the operator as a matter of urgency to ensure that we get the service running properly and on time."
A spokesman for Wardle Transport said: "When we first took on the Number 236 service we did not know how many people would be using the service.
“We have now allocated a larger vehicle for that service which we hope will improve the situation.
"If any customers have any issues with our services they can call our customer services on 0844 8004411 and we will be pleased to discuss any issues they have."