Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 25°C

min temp: 18°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Suffolk: Rural campaigner calls for innovative solutions to transport woes

09:22 13 December 2012

County councillor Guy McGregor says bus funding will not reduce any further.

County councillor Guy McGregor says bus funding will not reduce any further.

Archant

SUFFOLK should plough more money into innovative schemes to help rural communities hit by cuts to bus services, it’s been claimed.

shares

Figures released by the Campaign for Better Transport show Suffolk County Council (SCC) cut or withdrew 41 bus services in 2011/12.

The transport charity warned buses were vital to communities and that cuts risk tipping services into a “spiral of decline”.

But SCC said unless something disastrous happened it would not cut funding for bus services any further - it currently stands at around £2million-a-year.

Wil Gibson, of Suffolk Acre, which works improve the lives of those in rural Suffolk, said transport was a key concern. He called for Suffolk County Council to give more support to a scheme piloted by the charity that sees rural people loaned mopeds to get to-and-from work.

Dr Gibson said: “I think what we’d like to see is a mixed portfolio of support. That would mean less subsidy for the traditional bus routes, expansion of demand response transport and more support for one area that has been proven in Suffolk, the moped scheme.

“A lot of rural people work in the care or leisure industries and they finish late. The traditional bus route might not fit anyway but the moped scheme is a means of helping people access employment or training, until they can afford their own wheels.

“That’s not the panacea of everything but if you can offer a portfolio you can meet people’s needs much better.”

Stephen Joseph, chief executive of the Campaign for Better Transport said: “Buses are vital to communities and the economy. Without them many people are isolated, unable to access jobs or reliant on the car. By making year-on-year cuts like these, we run a very real risk of tipping services into a spiral of decline.”

Councillor Guy McGregor, cabinet member for roads and transport at SCC, said: “We took our hit a couple of years ago and unless something disastrous happens we’ll maintain the current level of funding.

“We’re going to be announcing in the new year a range of support for younger people. We keen to support Wil’s idea, he’s pushing at an open door.”

shares

0 comments

The Script Thetford High Lodge 2015-104

Chart-topping Dubliners The Script were back at Thetford last night to kick-start a weekend of big-name open-air concerts at the forest venue.

A former 4th July Celebration at RAF Feltwell.

A popular July 4 celebration organised by American airbases in west Suffolk has been cancelled due to “local threats”.

New Street, Woodbridge

An 82-year-old woman from Leiston who died yesterday following a crash in New Street, Woodbridge, has been named by police.

Luke Chambers models the new Ipswich Town away kit for 2015/16.

Ipswich Town’s new away kit launches tomorrow, although supply issues will affect the amount of stock available in the youth sizes of the strip.

Louise Chalklen and her son Aaron have fun fun colouring an action hero book.

Hard-working, stressed out adults are turning to a new craze that is sweeping Suffolk to help them switch off and forget about the pressures of day-to-day life.

Dr Dan Poulter is elected with 30, 317 votes.

The impact of Scottish devolution on the rest of the United Kingdom will be scrutinised by a Suffolk MP.

PC Ali Maidment with Jasmine and Tenzin

A police officer nicknamed ‘Robocop’ for his prolific arrest rate met his match in the early hours of this morning – after being confronted by a 2ft snake.

The fire service have extinguished a car fire in Yaxley.

Firefighters have tackled a car fire in Mellis Road in Yaxley, near Eye.

Drink drive campaign catches 102 drivers.

Essex Police arrested 102 drivers in the county during its June campaign.

Train delay after passenger pulled communications cord.

The 2.30pm London Liverpool Street to Norwich train has been delayed after a passenger pulled the emergency cord.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages