PASSENGERS on Neston’s new ‘hail and ride’ bus service are being offered free entry to the RSPB Dee Estuary nature reserve.
Ticket holders for route 23 – which operates on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays between Neston and Burton – are eligible for free admission to Burton Mere Wetlands.
Cheshire West and Chester Council and Neston Town Council agreed to jointly fund the experimental minibus scheme amid concerns about public transport connections around Neston.
The service links parts of the town not served by public transport while complementing existing bus routes.
Promoted under the Neston Connect banner, the service is operated by GHA Coaches with a low-floor accessible vehicle.
Local councillor Kay Loch said: “The bus route is already proving popular with local residents and I am sure this new offer will greatly enhance the new route.”
Local councillor Louise Gittins said: “This is a wonderful bonus for passengers of the new route, with the reserve situated only a short distance from the nearest bus stop in Burton village.”
The reserve is situated off the A540 Chester High Road. The nearest bus stop is in Burton village, about 600 metres from the reserve entrance through a path that winds through a small woodland before reaching the visitor building.
Paul Brady, visitor development officer for the RSPB, said: “We hope this offer will encourage more local people to visit our wonderful local nature reserve.
“And if you’re quick enough there are lots of young birds on the reserve, including avocet chicks and the cutest shelduck chicks.”
Burton Mere Wetlands is open from 9am-9pm, or dusk if sooner. Entry is free to valid bus ticket holders. Standard charges are adults £4, children £1, family £6, concessions £2.
For more information, visit www.rspb.org.uk/burtonmerewetlands.