HUNDREDS of people have signed a petition to keep a Bromyard bus service.

The 420 Users Group gathered 611 signatures from people who said they would like to see the 420 service between Hereford and Worcester, via Bromyard, remain in place.

Bromyard-based DRM, which runs the majority of the service, said it has no plans to cut it but urged people to use the 420 as much as they can.

"As far as we know, the bus from Bromyard to Worcester is less secure than the Bromyard to Hereford road," said Mike Jackson, the Users Group chairman, who said he heard from people in Bromyard that there were question marks over the continuation of the service.

"There are hundreds of people that use it. We understand it will be reviewed in August.

"It's a vitally important service. I've met people on the bus who have no other means of accessing that corridor between Hereford, Bromyard and Worcester.

"We're not looking for any improvements to the service. We just don't want it to get worse.

"It wasn't hard to collect the signatures. People wanted to sign it."

The petition was presented to Herefordshire Council's chairman, Cllr Brian Wilcox.

The council says the 420 service is operated by DRM on a commercial basis meaning they don't receive any subsidy from the council and, as a result, the authority has no influence over the level of service provided.

But David Morris, the owner of Bromyard-based DRM, said there are currently no plans to cut the service, but added it has to be cost effective.

"We want to offer a service to the public," he said.

"But it has to be commercially viable.

"If it runs at a loss then somewhere along the line we would have to make a decision whether to retain the service.

"If we could get those 600 people using it, it would be brilliant."