LOCAL bus operator McGill’s has been fined £75,000 by the Senior Traffic Commissioner over late services.

The company says it will 'strive further' to improve punctuality on its routes following the review which was held in Edinburgh recently.

McGill’s say they recognise that they must do more to overcome congestion and ensure services run on time.

Bosses added they were heartened to receive praise from stakeholders who trusted them as an operator.

Ralph Roberts, managing director of McGill’s, said: “Following a review from the Traffic Commissioner, we accept the outcome of this process which was detailed and fair in its judgement.

“A number of parties, including passenger body Bus Users Scotland, the DVSA and the Traffic Commissioner, confirmed their trust in McGill’s as an operator and praised how we dealt with major disruption and how we kept customers informed and recognised our significant investment record.

“That said, we recognise that a number of our services have experienced issues with punctuality over the last 12 months and we will strive further to improve the situation in the months to come.”

Mr Roberts acknowledged the dip in punctuality rates but believes the company’s performance is still high and he has also called for help from local government.

He added: “Congestion and roadworks continues to be a major problem for all bus operators across Scotland and this has had an impact on passenger numbers which have dropped across the board over the past decade.

“However, even when our punctuality rate has dipped, we are still achieving performance which outstrips most UK rail companies – including the main rail operator in Scotland.

“As a bus operator, we need to factor in the problems we face on the road network and evolve our business accordingly.

"However, we also need help from local authorities to ensure the issues do not discourage investment in the vital services we provide.”