PASSENGERS have been urged to gather tomorrow to show their support for a local bus service.

The number 42 service between York and Selby ran on Friday and Saturday nights through Cawood, Wistow, Kelfield, Stillingfleet and Naburn, but was cut when North Yorkshire County Council withdrew funding from service provider Arriva.

An appeal from local parish councils saw a six-month pilot scheme to restore the Friday and Saturday services launched in 2011, with parish councils underwriting costs along with Arriva and Selby District Council. John Cattanach, councillor for Cawood with Wistow, said he wanted a visible show of support for the service, to remind operators how appreciated it is, particularly following recent disruptions caused by bad weather.

He said: “I’m going to see if I can organise the ‘concessionary bus brigade’ to join me on the 11.32am from Cawood to Selby this coming Sunday.

“We subsidise this service and so if we can get out the ‘grey vote’, we can improve passengers figures and Arriva will receive a small income for each extra passenger.”

Last year, Coun Cattanach urged people to make sure they used the service, and show it was financially viable, or face losing it again.

The county council is currently re-tendering its contracts, and Coun Cattanach said he was hopeful Arriva would retain the 42.

“At the present moment in time, I’m told there is potential good news coming but no one can confirm it. We’re not quite there yet.”

In the meantime, he urged anyone who has used the service to continue to do so, and remind Arriva and NYCC how popular and potentially profitable it is.

“It’s more a statement of appreciation, rather than a show of support. We want to urge people to get use to doing it.

“All I was trying to do was redress the balance for what Arriva lost out on during the floods. It’ll be almost like a flash mob, getting people who, mostly, do not pay for a ticket to get together.”