Bus services in Kent

Image of two buses driving on the road

Last updated: 8 May 2024

This page is for residents to find out the latest information on bus services in Kent.

Who runs bus services

We don’t run bus services in Kent, they are run for profit by private bus operators. We do not have the powers or funding of an organisation like Transport for London.

However, we do provide funding to subsidise some routes or services that are not viable for private bus operators to run.

Bus use in Kent, as with rest of the UK, has only partially recovered since the pandemic. Local use of buses is around 80% of pre-pandemic levels, with off-peak use being much less than this.

Changes to bus services in Kent

Most changes to bus services have been proposed by private bus companies (affecting more than 100 services), some of which impact on school routes. View the list of bus services affected.

These services are not provided, or subsidised, by KCC.

KCC continues to invest over £30 million in support of Kent’s bus network and its users. This includes subsidising more than 80 bus routes, subsidising the costs of bus travel for students through the Kent Travel Saver and 16+ schemes and supporting free travel for elderly and disabled bus users.

KCC receives Government funding that will enable us to intervene to retain and replace some services, prioritising the protection of school services.  However, this funding is time limited and therefore the use of funding to support or protect services has only been considered where there is the prospect of them being sustainable again in the longer term. To date, KCC has been able to use the funding available to protect services from withdrawal and we are now supporting an additional 49 services, mainly school buses, that would not otherwise be running.

The expected annual cost of supporting these services is £3million and this has exhausted the funding available whilst KCC’s own budgets for the support of bus services are also fully allocated. Unfortunately, this means that KCC are not in a position to intervene when further services are subject to change or cancellation.

In recognition of the impacts on some communities, we are also making more money available for local community transport schemes, with support from the Department for Transport. We will be inviting applications from local communities shortly. Find out more about community transport schemes.

The latest bus service updates

These are the known and anticipated changes and cancellations to bus services in Kent, including the services affected by our subsidy withdrawals. The information shows services that are provided on a commercial basis (by bus operators) and those that are funded by us.

We are working with operators to try to provide some alternative services. When we receive information about alternative services, the information below will be updated.

Bus number Operator Route Change and impact Date of expected change Latest update
29StagecoachHastings to TenterdenService cancelled by the operatorTo be confirmedWe are not in a position to fund a replacement service.

The service will still operate from Hastings as far as Northiam, but will not continue as far as Tenterden.
3051st Bus StopVigo to Gravesend SchoolsService was cancelled by the operator.15 April 2024We are not in a position to fund a replacement service.

Service 306 and Vigo 1 offer alternatives for some passengers.
B150Farleigh CoachesWalderslade to MaidstoneOff-peak journeys cancelled. 2 January 2024School day-only service is now operated by Chalkwell.
S11Go CoachDarenth to West Kingsdown to Wrotham to Sevenoaks SchoolsService cancelled by the operator.10 February 2024We are not in a position to fund a replacement service.

Services S10, S12, and 308 provide alternatives for some passengers.

Service 408 is to be rerouted to provide an alternative from Wrothham Heath and Saint Mary's Platt.
S1Brian Jones CoachesGravesend to Swanscombe to Greenhithe to Longfield AcademyService cancelled by the operator.3 May 2024We are not in a position to fund a replacement service.

Brian Jones Coaches have amended service G1 to incorporate the majority of the S1 route, but some areas may not continue to have a direct service to Longfield Academy.
U19HAMS TravelEridge Green to WadhurstService cancelled by the operator31 July 2024We are not in a position to fund a replacement service.

Service 1066 provides an alternative in some instances but at less ideal times.

Or download the full list of service withdrawals planned (PDF, 202.2 KB).