Friday, 13 March 2009

Save our bus services - online petition launched

Liberal Democrat councillors have demanded immediate action to counter drastic service cuts by First Bus.

The cuts mean that some areas including Iron Acton and North Yate will have no daytime buses at all. Other areas such as South Yate will have one less bus per hour, and journeys from Yate to Bristol will be at least 10 minutes longer because they will stop many more times along the way.

Liberal Democrats have called on South Gloucestershire Council to arrange adequate alternative bus services for the areas affected by the cuts.

“These services are vital” said Cllr Ian Blair (Lib Dem, Yate North) “These cuts means more cars on our roads, and more congestion. Fewer people will take the bus, and First will want to cut services again”

Councillors are also asking First Bus to reduce their fares to a level at which public transport becomes an attractive alternative to cars.

“Every few months we get an increase in fares and a reduction in the services” said Cllr Paul Hulbert (Lib Dem, Dodington). “I can foresee a time in the not too distant future when our only buses will be to Yate Shopping Centre, and people in this heavily built-up area will have to walk a mile or more to catch the nearest bus. We need to break this spiral of higher fares and fewer passengers”

Councillors have set up an online petition at
asking for immediate action by South Gloucestershire Council to restore adequate bus services for the areas affected, and for First Bus to reduce their fares to a level at which they encourage people to use public transport instead of cars.

Buses should be efficient and affordable, and should serve the needs of the public.

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