25 March 2019

National Express 315 cutback

National Express have announced changes to their 315 service which sees it being severely truncated from the current Helston - Eastbourne run along the south coast. It now only runs from Plymouth to Bournemouth so longer runs will involve at least one change of coach, or more if coming up from Cornwall.

As Peter Murnaghan puts it The journey length is a hefty 13.5 hours from Helston (dep 0650) through to Eastbourne (arr 2020), for a fare of £65.  I doubt that many passengers travel from end to end on this marathon

The firm is cutting the Cornish part of its 315 service between Helston to Eastbourne. The route also takes in stops across Cornwall including Falmouth, Penryn, Truro, St Austell and Liskeard. However, the company said it was cutting the route, which will in future only start at Plymouth. Passengers coming back into Cornwall would have to change at Plymouth for alternative services to Penzance.

The move is a blow for Helston, and other places not on the railway line, although two other National Express services will continue to serve the town. It does mean however that there will be less flexibility for passengers.

A spokeswoman for National Express said: “After a detailed review of our services we found that areas west of Plymouth were simply not viable, and as a result the decision was made to cease the 315 service as of April 1


Cornwall Live then published a story with the headline

National Express cuts 315 service to Helston and leaves travellers heartbroken

which they illustrated by choosing several quotes from passengers who seemed more non-plussed than heatbroken!

“Although bad news, totally understandable and proof that if you don't use it, you lose it. I only wish we had reason to use it more because they are a very good company. Such is the price of growing old with old friends and relatives. We should have used it more!”


190310R National Express coach 315 in Liskeard, bound for Eastbourne copy

190309 NatEx 315 Liskeard

©Peter Murnaghan - National Express 315 passing through Liskeard

I used to use this a lot when I travelled to Portsmouth, although its been many years since my last trip. It was always handy not to have to change coaches.

There has been one other news story involving a National Express coach out of Plymouth:

A man and a woman have been arrested following claims they were having sex on a coach in public. The National Express bus had been travelling along the M5 near Cullompton at 22:40 GMT on Monday when officers were called. The pair, a 29-year-old Bristol man and a 32-year-old woman from Barnstaple, were arrested on suspicion of an act of outraging public decency. The suspects were later released under investigation.National Express said in a statement it was "aware of an alleged incident" on board a bus travelling between Blackpool and Plymouth. The firm added it would "assist the police with any investigation"

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-devon-47535957 Annotation 2019-03-24 144007


You do wonder if the story has been exaggerated somewhat as the couple were later released without charge after Devon and Cornwall Police said: "Police have reviewed CCTV footage supplied by the bus company in relation to this allegation. "The footage is inconclusive, and therefore no further policing action will be taken into this matter."

It probably wouldn't have happened on a coach to Eastbourne!


  1. Just in case anyone is curious, the route east of Bournemouth is mostly replaced by a new Gatwick Airport - Brighton - Bournemouth - Poole service operating once a day in each direction. The Bournemouth-Eastbourne section appears to be abandoned although there is a frequent local Brighton & Hove bus service between the two towns.

  2. Is the 315 still going from Bournemournmouth to Plymouth y

    1. The 315 Bournemouth service is not operating currently. The only services from Plymouth are 405, 903 and 906 heading towards London or Bristol and Birmingham.


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