CHANGES to the Yellow Bus network will come into effect at the end of August as the company plans ahead for the Spur Road rebuild.

The amendments are designed to improve reliability and punctuality during what the company is calling "a potentially challenging period".

The bus company is expecting services in and around Castlepoint and the Royal Bournemouth Hospital to be affected by knock-on congestion while the nine-month reconstruction project gets under way from September 6.

Jenni Wilkinson, Yellow Buses' head of marketing, said: "Our winter network timetable traditionally takes effect from October. We have brought it forward this year, mainly because of the expected congestion due to the start of work on the A338 and other ongoing roadworks.

"Our aim is to have a robust timetable in place rather than try and keep to the existing service level which risks buses being held up for long periods in traffic congestion.

"This is a potentially challenging period and we are doing everything possible to minimise the impact on our passengers."

Routes affected include the 4 between Bournemouth Square and the hospital. The number of buses on this section of route between Castlepoint and Royal Bournemouth Hospital will be reduced from 28 to 22 per hour.

Network changes coming into effect from August 30 will include:

• Route 4b will terminate at Castlepoint and no longer serve the hospital. Through tickets will be offered to the hospital allowing passengers to using services 3h and 2 2a 2b.

• Route 1x and night buses N1a and N5 will be withdrawn for winter. N6 will only operate from Friday night to Sunday morning and change route, merging with service N5 and extend to Mountbatten roundabout.

• Routes 4a, b and c and 20 have some re-timings.

Full details of the changes will be posted to the Yellows' website at from August 17.