A VITAL bus service, once described as the worst in Essex, is set to improve.

The First Bus-operated 45 service, which runs between Moulsham Lodge and Oxney Green, is to improve its frequency from June 1, with buses arriving every 12 minutes on a week day, and every 15 minutes on a Saturday.

The move follows customer feedback and petitions from those wanting a better deal.

Chris Hibbitt, chairman of Writtle Parish Council, said he was delighted by the timetable changes and would continue to monitor its reliability.

He said: “The village of Writtle is totally dependent on the 45 bus for public transport.

“Many parishioners use the bus regularly and have told us of problems with delays and buses being withdrawn.”

Nikki Allder, general manager for First Mid Essex said the changes followed on from staff and passenger feedback.

He said: “Once implemented, we will monitor its performance and continue to make improvements as and when they are needed”.

Moulsham Lodge councillor Mark Springett said: “I was at a presentation a few months ago with the county council and the bus operator. We asked them about the route and they all but admitted that the 45 was the worst service in the county.

“They were interested in how they could improve it, so I hope this goes some way towards that.”