Buses to and from Charlbury
*** NEWS FLASH: SINGLE FARES CAPPED AT £2 ON STAGECOACH BUSES ***
THIS HAS NOW BEEN EXTENDED UNTIL SEPTEMBER 2023
X9 bus joins the £2 fare scheme
Following the acquisition of Pulhams Coaches by the Oxford Bus Company (Go-Ahead Group), the X9 bus from Charlbury is to join the national fare cap scheme from 1st July.
That means that buses to Witney and Chipping Norton will cost no more than £2 for a single journey.
Charlbury buses – everything you need to know!
Did you know that from Charlbury there are 9 buses to Witney and 14 buses to Oxford every day? We are really lucky to have these services which are a lifeline especially for older and younger residents – please support them!
*** NEWS FLASH: S3 bus times changed on 5 March ***
Stagecoach has published a revised timetable for the S3 bus to Oxford, which took effect in March. The occasional 7 bus will no longer serve Charlbury: they have been redirected to Witney instead.
The main changes are that the bus has a more regular hourly timetable through the day; and the late night service from Oxford no longer runs. The last bus from Oxford to Charlbury is the 21.55.
Morning buses to Oxford leave the Bell at 05.52, 07.17, 08.27 and 09.27.
Where/what time do the buses go?
Buses to Witney/Chipping Norton
Pulhams Coaches runs the X9 service from Witney to Chipping Norton. On the way, it passes through Hailey, Finstock, Charlbury, Spelsbury and Chadlington. There are 9 buses each way Monday-to-Friday and 8 on Saturdays.
Buses to Woodstock/Oxford and evening buses to Chipping Norton
These are run by Stagecoach and are a little more complicated.
The S3 bus route from Oxford splits after Woodstock, with alternate buses going to either Chipping Norton or Charlbury.
In the late afternoon/evening, the S3 buses to Charlbury continue on to serve Chipping Norton as well.
UPDATE! A new S3 timetable came into force on 5 March 2023
Timetables & Journey planners
Timetables can be found on company websites:
Planning your journey:
Or you can try Google maps – put in your destination and click on “Directions” – choose the little train icon for public transport options.
Where do I catch the bus in Charlbury?
Can I get live updates?
Or download the Stagecoach Bus App to track your bus on-the-go.
Here are direct links to some of the main bus stops in town:
TEN GOOD REASONS TO CATCH THE BUS
by Linda Mowat
It was recently reported that both of Charlbury’s bus services may be axed in August 2024 unless they have become commercially viable by that time. This is devastating news for the significant minority of Charlbury residents who, whether out of choice or necessity, do not drive and therefore depend on the buses for local travel.
I have lived in Charlbury for eleven years without a car and have never felt cut off, thanks to the excellent public transport services we enjoy. It has however never ceased to amaze me – even before Covid struck – how under-used our buses are, given the huge advantages they offer. I suspect the main reason for this is that most residents, being car-owners, simply don’t know where the buses go, how often they run, what time they leave, or from where. Another reason is probably that people think buses are inconvenient, uncomfortable, unreliable and slow.
Obviously the bus is not an option for all of the people all of the time. But it could be an option for most of the people some of the time! If everybody in Charlbury made just one bus journey a month it would make a difference. Here are ten good reasons to give it a go.
1 SAVING THE PLANET
We all know it’s better for the environment if we leave our cars at home and use public transport whenever we can. But in Charlbury very few of us seem to do it.
The S3 goes from several points in Charlbury to Fawler, Stonesfield, Combe, Woodstock and Yarnton as well as the centre of Oxford. Perfect for the County Museum, Blenheim or Yarnton Garden Centre.
For the John Radcliffe and Churchill Hospitals in Oxford, forget the perennial headache of hospital parking! Take the S3 to South Parade in Summertown and a five-minute walk will connect you with the 700 hospital service on the Banbury Road.
The X9 goes to Finstock, Hailey and Witney in one direction; Spelsbury, Dean, Chadlington and Chipping Norton in the other. Ideal for the Charlbury Garden Centre, walks, pubs, shops, markets and swimming pools.
Both of our bus services run regularly, Monday to Saturday. Timetables are displayed on the bus stops and are available at stagecoachbus.com for the S3, pulhamscoaches.com for the X9. On the Charlbury website the times of the next buses are given in the top right corner of the home page. Paper timetables are usually available on the S3.
Anyone who has used a train recently will almost certainly find the bus more reliable! and if real-time information displays can be installed at Charlbury bus stops as suggested, this will help build confidence in the service.
5 USE YOUR BUS PASS
If you receive a state pension, off-peak bus travel is FREE! This is SUCH A PRIVILEGE – why not take advantage? At the same time you can save money on petrol and dispense with worries about parking.
The buses are clean, modern, comfortable and warm, with windows you can open for fresh air. There is easy access for wheelchair users and priority seating for people with disabilities.
The drivers, quite apart from their skill in negotiating our country lanes, are courteous, friendly and helpful. They also exercise remarkable patience when their route through the centre of Charlbury is blocked by thoughtlessly-parked private cars.
When was the last time you saw a hare? From the top of the bus, above the hedgerows, you’ll have a panoramic view of our beautiful countryside. Ideal for spotting hares, rabbits, deer, birds of prey and other wildlife.
If you’re a walker, extend your range by taking the bus for part of the way. Have you tried walking back to Charlbury from Fawler, Stonesfield, Combe, Woodstock, Spelsbury, Dean or Chadlington? It’s also fun to connect different bus routes: for example take the X9 to Finstock, walk to North Leigh, admire the church, pick up the 233 to Woodstock, have a coffee or visit the bookshop and finally catch the S3 back to Charlbury. You can even take your dog on the bus.
10 USE IT OR LOSE IT!
Last but not least, the threat is serious – use it or lose it! It may not matter much to you, but for many people in Charlbury the bus is our lifeline. PLEASE support us by using the buses for local journeys whenever you can. You never know, you might even find you enjoy it.
Did you know:
- Contactless: you can now pay by card on X9 as well as S3 buses.
- Lower fares: under a Government scheme, Stagecoach bus company, which operates the S3 service, is capping fares at £2 for single journeys from 1 January to 31 March 2023. Just get on the bus and ask for a single fare.
- Charlbury bus services are subsidised by Oxfordshire County Council until August 2024 – if we want them to continue after that, we need to make sure we use them or we will lose them
- Free travel: if you are over pension age you can apply for a free bus pass here.
- Travelling in a group? Stagecoach sells a group day ticket for up to 4 people. From Charlbury you want their “Oxfordshire Country Group DayRider” if staying outside Oxford or “West Gold Group DayRider” to go anywhere in Oxfordshire or even some neighbouring counties.
- Blenheim Palace discount: 30% off entry price if you travel by bus – just show your bus ticket.
- Going out for the evening?
- Evening S3 services Charlbury to Chippy run from the Slade at 18:52, 19:28, 20:58 and 22:58, and from Chippy back to Charlbury at 18:13, 20:13 and 22:13.
- Late buses from Oxford/Woodstock leave Oxford at 21:55 (S3).
- Country walks (Monday-Saturday): have you thought of going for a longer walk or pub lunch in Finstock or Chadlington and getting the bus home? Look up the X9 timetable.
- Sundays: currently there are no buses to or from Charlbury on Sundays
- Watch out! From Oxford during the day, S3 buses go alternately to Charlbury and Chipping Norton – make sure you get on the right one!
- Wi-Fi: there is free Wi-Fi on Stagecoach buses
- Taking a local bus emits a little over half the greenhouse gases of a single occupancy car journey and also helps to remove congestion from the roads