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New operator for popular Rutland bus service?

The process to identify a new operator to run Rutland's RF1 bus service is being extended following a decision by Rutland County Council to undertake further procurement work.

The RF1 runs from Melton to Corby via Oakham and Uppingham and is one of the county's most popular bus routes.

Rutland County Council was forced to identify a new operator to run the service after Centrebus decided to cancel its contract.

With more than 120,000 passenger journeys last year, RF1 is a commercially viable route, but an open tender process resulted in just one bid, from Stagecoach. However, during the tender process Centrebus decided it would like to continue operating the service.

Steve Ingram, strategic director for places at Rutland County Council, said: "The most important things remains the continued operation of the RF1 service for the benefit of the many passengers who rely on it.m

"However, the local authority also has a duty to provide value for money and safeguard public resources, particularly in light of the substantial figures that are potentially involved. "As a result, the decision has been taken to extend the procurement process for RF1 while ensuring measures are in place to continue meeting the needs of service users."

The extended tender process will run until July 6.

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