BALLOONS, streamers and ribbon-cutting ceremonies will signal the launch of five new bus services on January 12, four of which will serve the south of the county.

At breakfast time in Aylesbury, councillors will hop on the "silver rider" a 15-minute bus service to the railway station, which is free for Chiltern Railways season ticket holders.

Bus buffs can then move to Saunderton Station at 10.15am for the launch of the first of two demand responsive transport services.

Would-be passengers can book trips by phone within a certain rural area. The Saunderton bus will serve Princes Risborough and High Wycombe. Another service will be launched at Court Gardens in Marlow at noon, serving the area of Henley and Marlow.

Before that, at 11am, there will be ribbon cutting at Wycombe station, when the Cressex Express makes its first journey. This new service involves five mini-buses, bought by the county council, running every 15 minutes between the station, Wycombe Hospital and Cressex Business Park.

Councillors hope people who now drive to Cressex will use the train, now they can catch an express bus which will drop them close to work.

After lunch, air travel puts in an appearance, with the start of the High Wycombe to Heathrow service, via Beaconsfield and Gerrards Cross. Carousel Buses is working in partnership with the British Airports Authority and Buckinghamshire County Council.

The final launch is of "County Riders" formerly known "Easybuses", a service set up with Government Rural Bus Challenge money. This enabled the council to buy five wheelchair-accessible minibuses.

For more information call 01296 383788.