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1960s and 1970s—decline and councils step in

In spite of the growth in private motor cars, the early years of the 1960s were positive enough. By the middle of the decade, however, the growing impact of the private car had begun to bite.  As fewer passengers travelled, Crosville had to increase fares. Bus fares on the Ruthin to Mold corridor had been stable but jumped significantly at the end of the 1960s to 5/3d return (26p). At the start of the 1960s, the return fare had been 3/3d (16p). This represented an increase of 67 per cent in 10 years. Fewer passengers also resulted in the start of significant cutbacks. In September 1965, Crosville withdrew the Ruthin - Chester through service which, till then, had operated five days a week. In 1962, Sundays between Ruthin and Mold had already been halved, generally to three return journeys. In 1971, Sundays were soon to go to one journey only in each direction. In 1965, the Ruthin terminus moved from the railway station back to Market Street and this reflected the withdrawal of passenger trains from Ruthin three years earlier. Also in 1965, the first through Ruthin - Llanarmon yn Iâl - Mold journey operated. It was in 1970 that most Ruthin to Mold buses began operating via Llanarmon. In 1968, the journey time from Ruthin to Mold reduced to 40 minutes. It was during the late 1960s that the government permitted the use of longer saloons and these began to replace some double decked journeys on the Ruthin to Mold service. These longer single decks could carry up to 53 seated passengers. Crosville was able to operate these modern single deckers without a conductor, a process completed on such vehicles by 1974. The number of pupils travelling nevertheless resulted in the continued use of double decks at school times and at the time these still required a conductor. In 1969, Crosville transferred to the National Bus Company. National Bus Company subsidiaries had a duty to break even year on year and Crosville was compelled to consider loss-making routes. In 1971, under threat of withdrawals, both Denbighshire and Flintshire County Councils exercised new powers under the Transport Act 1968 to subsidise loss-making rural bus services. This included the Ruthin to Mold suite of routes which otherwise would have disappeared altogether, other than at school times. The annual deficit in 1971 was recorded as £1,912 (equivalent to about £24,000 today). Meanwhile, the return fare from Ruthin to Mold was now 40p. Between 1962 and 1972, Crosville had put up fares by 122 per cent. The 1973 fuel crisis added yet more misery for farepaying passengers, as Crosville revised its fares significantly again. By 1973, Crosville had combined the B37 and B38 market day services from the villages of Eryrys and Maeshafn to Mold. On schooldays, Crosville operated the B36 from Mold via the villages to Ysgol Brynhyfryd, Ruthin. In 1977, Crosville withdrew Sunday buses on the B33 (Ruthin to Mold) route but re-established weekday through journeys between Ruthin and Chester, largely as B8. The B33 became the B7 and school journeys via Graianrhyd the B6. There were again eight departures from Ruthin to Mold on weekdays and nine on Saturdays, five of which went through to Chester (six on Saturdays). Towards the end of the decade and especially during the early 1980s, double deck buses on the Ruthin - Mold service began to be suitable for driver-only operation, thus laying off conductors. These were largely Bristol VRTs with Eastern Coach Works bodies. By then, Bristol-manufactured saloons had begun to be replaced by Leyland Nationals.
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Bristol VRT/SL3 with Easter Coach Works 74 seat  body, new in 1980, seen near Llanarmon
Bristol RELL6G with Eastern Coach Works 53 seat body new in 1971 at Mold ready for the the B36, a school variant of the B37, to Ruthin via Ysgol Brynhyfryd
1969 timetable showing all journeys between Ruthin and Mold. The B33 was the main service, with the B34 between Llanarmon and Mold only. Also included is the F9 Birkenhead
A 48-seat Leyland National new in 1973, seen at Ruthin prior to departing towards Mold and Chester