Buses to Oxford.

I travel to Oxford most weeks, which would be about 50X 60 miles a year = 3000 car miles- so I try to go by bus, specially since getting my bus pass. I chill out happily on the front seat of the top deck. There used to be a direct Stratford-Shipston-Oxford bus, but now you have to catch the 50 bus and change in Chippy onto the S3- except on Sundays, when the bus goes straight through. Theoretically there are connections in Chippy 4 times each weekday, and I often catch the 9.32 from Shipston, change and arrive in Oxford at 11. Coming back you can connect on the !3.55 or 17. 15 from Oxford.
Oxford-Stratford seems an ideal route to attract tourists, who could effectively subsidise the service for us locals. But at present these changes in Chipping Norton are very confusing. Sometimes you cross the road, sometimes you stay the same side. The service is not well publicised, there is no information on the bus either on screens or from the driver to let you know where you are. I have met very baffled Japanese tourists bravely trying to get from Oxford to Woodstock to visit Blenheim, which the bus service does try to promote.. If you look on line for information on buses from Oxford to Stratford, or ask in the Oxford Tourist Information office, the existence of the route through Shipston is a well-kept secret. I’ve been trying to encourage Stagecoach to see the potential from an improved, well-publicised, well-marketed regular service and shall continue to battle for that.

If you want to travel on to London by bus, you can catch the Oxford Tube or the X90 from Gloucester Green, both costing £16 for a day return or £8 over 60. But whatever your age, you can reduce the cost further by going to www.megabus.com , booking a nominated Oxford Tube bus in advance and paying only £1 each way.

Happy bus journeys!

Helen Winnifrith

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