CHANGES to at least four bus routes will be implemented when the new Guided Busway starts on April 3.

The latest information states there will be four buses an hour throughout the day from Leigh (service V1) and Atherton (service V2), meaning passengers travelling from Astley Street in Tyldesley will benefit from eight buses an hour.

This is intended to make travel easier and to help people get to work and other places more easily.

As part of the network of changes, services 12/25, X34, 39 Night Bus and 26 journeys operated by First Greater Manchester will be replaced by the new Vantage services, new service 35 and an improved X39.

The new service 35 will maintain connections between Leigh, Astley, Tyldesley, Little Hulton, Walkden, Roe Green and Swinton.

It is intended to provide easy access for customers wanting to interchange onto Vantage at Tyldesley, as well as for short trips into town centres and community hubs.

Certain peak hour trips will extend to/from Manchester to retain local links.

The improved X39 will operate a revised route through Leigh, Astley, Tyldesley, Little Hulton, Walkden, Old Clough Lane, East Lancs Road and direct into Manchester.

The Leigh-Salford-Manchester Guided Busway will start on April 3 despite some concerns from the public about it causing delays in service and worries about the overall cost of the venture.

Herbert P Montague said on our Facebook page: "I expect it will cause delays for all those folk that aren't going to Manchester on it that have to cross its path.

"I reckon those individuals' delays will amount to more than the time savings boasted.

"I hope my reckoning is wrong."

Ian Humphreys, head of commercial for First Greater Manchester, said: “We're looking forward to serving customers on the direct and frequent Vantage services in April, providing premium services at everyday fares.

"For many people these new Vantage journeys will replace existing bus connections, so we've introduced network revisions in the area that also maintain local links, such as the new service 35.

“I'm sure these changes will attract even more people to use bus services, with customers benefitting from both the important local links as well as the quicker and more frequent journeys into the regional centre."

These new low-emission hybrid buses are fitted with free Wi-Fi, USB charging points, climate control and on-board 'next stop' audio and visual announcements.

Full details of the Vantage service, including passenger timetable, can be found at