A NEW bus service enabling people to visit the North York Moors despite cuts to funding has been hailed a success.

The Moors Rambler bus, which carried its first passengers last Sunday, was near capacity as it brought people to visit the area from as far as Teesside.

A group of dedicated volunteers, the Friends of Moorsbus, have worked hard to ensure that despite the North York Moors National Park cutting all its funding for public transport, people can still visit the area by bus.

Eden Blyth of the group said that the Sunday service will mean that those without transport are still able to enjoy the area even from far away.

He said: "The service was designed to help those without a car, and anyone who wants to keep this a special and quieter place for us and future generations.

"We had walkers, those who came simply to admire the scenery and those coming out for a meal or to visit a museum or other attraction.

"We’d like to create an affordable transport system to and around the Moors area that allows people without cars to travel there. We want to provide something for both locals and visitors from home and abroad."

The bus, operated by Arriva on behalf of the Moorsbus Community Interest Company, is funded by donations in addition to help from independent charity the North Yorkshire Moors Association.

Bill Breakell, former head of tourism and transport for the Moors park authority, said that the bus will help to protect the environment with less people bringing their cars in to the area.

He said: "For years, residents have said that the problem with tourism is not visitors themselves, but their cars. So if more people come by bus it will help everyone.

"The bus is a great way to meet new people, explore new areas and literally to have a change of scenery."

The bus service will run every Sunday until September 28 and for more information email breakell@orange.net for a timetable or friendsofmoorsbus@outlook.com