VOLUNTEERS will be providing free bus services on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day.

Scholes man Rodger Batley will get behind the wheel of a 34-seat bus provided by Milnsbridge-based Stotts Coaches on Boxing Day to run services between the Holme Valley and Huddersfield Royal Infirmary (HRI).

And Kirklees Green Party celebrates 20 years of running free festive bus services when it operates a service from Flockton to Huddersfield on Boxing Day and from Fairhill Road, Berry Brow, to the Infirmary on New Year’s Day.

Green councillor Andrew Cooper, who will drive the minibus, said: “We are very pleased to have achieved 20 continuous years of running the Christmas bus service. It is a bit of a landmark for us. We didn’t think it would be 20 years when we started.

“It is a free service run by volunteers – it is highly valued and it is well-used.”

He said: “I remember the first one we ran in 1992, which we ran as a protest against the removal of services over the holiday period.

“Since then some services have been resumed in some areas in recent years on Boxing Day.”

As well as Clr Cooper, Kirkburton ward Kirklees councillors Derek Hardcastle and Robert Barraclough will be volunteer drivers of the Green Party minibus.

Clr Hardcastle said: “I really enjoy doing the bus service each year and it is now very much part of my Christmas holiday routine.

“At this time of year when there are limited public transport services, taxi journeys can be expensive – particularly from rural villages – so people who use the minibus we operate really do value it.

“We will put timetables on bus stops and in local shops so people are aware of our schedule.

“The service is free to use, but donations are always welcome.”

The Green Party minibus service on Boxing Day will run hourly between 11am and 6pm from Huddersfield town centre bus station to Flockton via Waterloo, Lepton and Grange Moor.

The New Year’s Day service will run hourly between 11am and 7pm from Berry Brow to the Infirmary via Newsome and the town centre

Mr Batley, a plant maintenance engineer and keen bus enthusiast, has been running his Holme Valley Boxing Day service for 10 years.

It runs from Scholes to HRI via Holmfirth, Wooldale, Brockholes, Honley Bridge, Berry Brow, Lockwood, Huddersfield and Marsh.

Details of times for the voluntary bus services are available at www.wymetro.co.uk while timetables for Mr Batley’s service have been posted on bus shelters along the route.