READING Buses swerved on several of its controversial proposals to axe services in Caversham following pressure from residents.

It responded its original consultation and has outlined a string of changes to the plans, which includes keeping the Pink 23 and 24 routes between Caversham Park and Emmer Green.

The routes will be converted into anti-clockwise and clockwise loops to provide access to schools, key roads and vital services.

However, in the firm has now announced that some of its number 22 service will be scrapped in order to plug a hole in its finances.

From February next year, the 22 route will run as an hourly service during off peak hours and on Saturdays. The Sunday service is set to be axed entirely.

Campaigner Fiona Pringle said: "We are pleased, after a huge public reaction, in what was initially a very understated consultation, that Reading Buses have taken on board points made in our previous discussions and have conceded in some areas.

"All bus stops will now be retained, including the 16 bus stops serving all the elderly and vulnerable residential facilities, which under the previous proposals would have been removed by Reading Buses.

"There however are a number of concerns with the frequency of the 22 service, which will have an effect on residents, especially school children, college students and workers finishing their day before peak service resumes."

The original cost-cutting proposals planned to scrap the Pink 24 route.

It sparked a mountain of opposition from residents after several key roads faced losing their place on a bus route.

Martijn Gilbert, chief executive of Reading Buses, added: "Whilst it is impossible to accommodate every piece of feedback received, the outcome of this consultation represents a sizeable reduction in the level of savings originally anticipated."

Reading Buses has also vowed to provide an hourly through link to Royal Berkshire Hospital.

The service will operate Monday and Saturday by extending the 22 route from Caversham Heights and merging it with the 19 service to/from Lower Earley.