Changes to bus routes – Leith Links is hit hard!

The tramworks that have already closed Constitution Street are soon to also affect Leith Walk, for the next 18 months. From 28th March, there will only be one lane on Leith Walk, for traffic going south (that is, going UP Leith Walk). Buses will still go up Leith Walk but those coming down will go down either Easter Road or Bonnington Road (No.10,11).

People who live beyond the bottom of Leith Walk  / Easter Road will be especially hard hit. We are told that the No.12 bus will terminate at George Street and stop coming down to Leith at all. This was the main bus serving Leith Links (and Salamander, the Pirniefields and Prospectbanks) and Seafield, and will be a major loss.

To partially replace the 12,  the No 1 will now come down Easter Road as before and continue  along the Links and on to Seafield (old Eastern General site). But there are two problems with this:

  1. The No. 1 will go from the foot of Easter Road along Vanburgh Place, Hermitage Park and Claremont Park, in other words along the south side of the Links. No buses will go along Duncan Place / Links Place as they have been doing recently. There will therefore be NO bus at all serving people who live on the North side of the Links, e.g Links Gardens, Links Place, Salamander Place/Street, Elbe Street, Mitchell Street, Queen Charlotte St. etc. and Constitution St (who have already lost the No. 16 bus).
  2. Although we have not yet managed to get sight of a finalised revised timetable, it seems likely (since there is now only one, not two) that the overall frequency of buses along the Links will be reduced, possibly by as much as 50%.

This means quite a long walk across the Links to get to a bus stop for many people, with a particular impact on anybody older  / with mobility impairments  / pushing a wheelchair or buggy / carrying heavy shopping etc. It could also significantly increase journey times. There could be safety issues, at night time.

Leith Links Community Council is very disturbed by this change. There was no consultation at all with the local community. The population on the north side of the Links is increasing hugely with all the new flats going up – people are told to use public transport, not cars (and few car parking spaces are provided) – but now the public transport is being removed!

We have signalled our concern to our three local Councillors and to Lothian Buses in the strongest terms. We will continue to campaign vigorously and will keep you posted with whatever replies we receive.

Please use the comments facility, below, to add you voice and tell us how these changes will affect you. These comments will, hopefully, strengthen the argument for this very damaging decision to be reviewed.

You can read more about the bus diversions overall here.

 But where is the 12? 


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  • Karen Greig

    Thanks so much for keeping us up to date with changes.

    As if Leith and Constitution Street especially haven’t been hit enough recently now the North side of Leith Links is essentially cut off. All the locals and new houses and businesses are now not accessible by bus – unbelievable!
    Edinburgh City Council wants the public to take buses rather than cars… how can they when they implement foolish changes like this, without even a consultation with the community.

    I will be raising this with Chris Wilson of Trams to Newhaven at our fortnightly meeting.

  • Denise

    This will also affect carers working on and around Leith Walk. Especially carers who work at night. Their safety has not been taken into consideration or the clients needing carers. It’s difficult enough especially with the lack of workers having to come from further afield.

  • Heather

    I am disabled and I rely on buses to get around. I’m really concerned that there will be no buses servicing this area of the Links.
    I chose to move here because there were good bus links to the city. These have already diminished with the 12 only running one way. This service being cut further is going to isolate me and means I’ll struggle to get out and about.

  • Linda Nicol Smith

    The lack of consultation is concerning and given the mixed demographic of young families and older people who rely on buses this is deeply unsatisfactory. A high handed dismissal of the needs of the local Leith population once again. Shame on you Lothian Buses!!

  • Lynne thomson

    Why should residents of leith and leith links be hit the hardest again. We have already undergone months of upheaval and road closures without now losing vital transport. There are many elderly people who rely on the 12 bus. The council are trying to cut leith off . As a resident who pays council tax i feel I am not getting value for my money at this time.

  • Alastair

    This is quite simply unacceptable. Several elderly people in this Prospect Bank can only get the 12 to the shops. Awful lack of consultation and once again what happens to the many shops on Leith walk!