MORE environmentally friendly Buses will replace a Stagecoach fleet in west Oxfordshire.

Twelve new gold vehicles, with engines that meet strict green Government guidelines, will replace 16 old-design blue and white buses. There are already five gold buses in use.

From Sunday, March 28, Stagecoach’s S1 and S2 buses will run an evening service from Monahan Way in Shilton Park, Carterton, to Oxford and Witney.

Shilton Park residents currently have to walk to Carterton town centre to catch a bus at Bovingdon Road after 7pm. Buses will now run into the early hours of the morning.

Stagecoach will increase the frequency of buses between 7.35am and 8.05am from Thorney Leys, Witney, to Oxford from every 15 minutes to every 10 minutes.

There will be an additional early morning journey between the current 5.02am and 6.12am from Witney Market Place, leaving at 5.42am.

The changes follow a month-long Stagecoach consultation with customers.

Trevor Bayliss, manager for the S1 and S2, said: “We were very pleased with the level of response to the consultation.

“Publishing a timetable before it’s finalised is a great way to encourage people to tell you how they feel about it and the areas they would like to see improved.”

The 17 gold buses will cover Carterton to Oxford, via Witney and Eynsham.

They use Euro 5 environmental engines and have low-level floors for easy access and have high-back leather seats.

Passengers can access free wi-fi on board.

The 12 new buses cost £2.4m.

A series of meetings were also held in Witney, Eynsham and Carterton before the timetable change.

Drivers have had extra training and will wear a gold tie with a blue blazer.

The timetable is available at or from drivers from Monday.