The following communication has been received from B&NES which the Parish Council has been asked to pass on to all residents.
As you may know, WECA is the Transport Authority with £57m to spend on buses and the Government’s permission to support regular buses.
As Member Advocate for Rural Communities, I have discussed with NES councillors from all parties and none, parish councils, bus campaigners and residents how we can persuade the WECA Mayor to use some of this money to benefit all our residents – it would cost around £2m to restore the lost buses in NES.
B&NES has already given WECA £1m towards supported buses this year and in July we sent him an innovative, cost-effective proposal for a rural bus network. He refused our plan, calling it “bus bingo”.
The next stage in the campaign is to gather a petition from our residents to tell the WECA Mayor that the loss of rural buses is no game for them. He should not waste millions of pounds on cosmetic branding (£4m) or birthday buses (£8m), when entire communities (around 40,000 people) have lost their regular bus service. Here is the link:
Please would you share it with your councillors, residents, community groups, local businesses etc?
I will follow up with FB advertisements and physical posters that can be distributed to people who are not on social media or the internet, as it is many of our older residents who are feeling the loss of public transport, and their independence most badly.
This is a cross-party initiative as all our residents are impacted, regardless of who they voted for. Do get in contact if you want more information.
Best wishes and thank you for your support.
Councillor for Bathavon South