Cash bid to rescue crucial bus service

This Is Wiltshire: Blunsdon residents who say changes to the bus timetable leave many without a link to shops and doctors Blunsdon residents who say changes to the bus timetable leave many without a link to shops and doctors

VILLAGERS are calling for talks with developers to ask for cash help with reinstating a regular bus service between the village and the Orbital Shopping Centre.

Last year Thamesdown Transport withdrew the number 12 service – leaving many villagers feeling isolated and unable to reach vital services, such as the library and gym.

The company said at the time it was for commercial reasons as not enough people were using the half-hourly service, but the decision has left some residents feeling abandoned.

Villager Barbara Carlson, 51, said: “It has left many people who need to get to the Orbital shopping centre feeling trapped, especially with this recent weather.

“In order to get to the Orbital, people now need to take buses which means waiting, which puts a lot of people off. It has cut people off from the library and the gym. I need to use the gym twice a week for physio but at the moment I am only able to go once a week when my daughter is able to take me.”

Now, with development work set to take place close by, it is hoped Section 106 money, which has to be provided by developers to enhance communities, can rescue the service.

Parish council chairman Ian Jankinson wants to negotiate with Hills UK Ltd, which has applied to build 61 homes on land close to Ermin Street.

He said: “On a previous development on Ermin Street we were able to work with the developer to secure money for work on the graveyard and tennis courts. If we can sit down with Hills and possibly Thamesdown Transport to work out what would be needed in terms of money then hopefully we can have the bus back.

“It is still something we are regularly asked about by people keen to know if we have a solution. It has really affected people who had come to rely on being able to get to the Orbital.

“The alternative now is to go straight into town which is not what a lot of people want.”

Thamesdown Transport has not ruled out the possibility but said it is unlikely to be involved.

Managing director Paul Jenkins said: “Negotiations with developers around Section 106 contributions to public transport links are normally held with the borough council as part of the discussions around planning applications, so we would not expect to be included in those during the initial stages.”

Comments (14)

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8:06am Fri 14 Feb 14

Always Grumpy says...

What did the selfish residents of Blunsdon do before the Orbital Centre was built?
What did the selfish residents of Blunsdon do before the Orbital Centre was built? Always Grumpy

8:35am Fri 14 Feb 14

Phantom Poster says...

What's wrong with the library and gym in town?
What's wrong with the library and gym in town? Phantom Poster

8:59am Fri 14 Feb 14

A.Baron-Cohen says...

Good Luck to the pensioners, if they can get the public 106 money to pay for the required bus route and with free bus passes, this would be a great deal for them.
Good Luck to the pensioners, if they can get the public 106 money to pay for the required bus route and with free bus passes, this would be a great deal for them. A.Baron-Cohen

9:12am Fri 14 Feb 14

Davethered says...

There's a bus that goes to St Andrews Ridge every 20 minutes. Why can't that go the extra mile a few times a day or at least a couple of times in the morning and afternoon. Such a waste of an opportunity again by TT . As always they don't want to help anybody , just line their own pockets . By the way the st andrew ridge bus is always empty anyway.
There's a bus that goes to St Andrews Ridge every 20 minutes. Why can't that go the extra mile a few times a day or at least a couple of times in the morning and afternoon. Such a waste of an opportunity again by TT . As always they don't want to help anybody , just line their own pockets . By the way the st andrew ridge bus is always empty anyway. Davethered

9:30am Fri 14 Feb 14

EmmBee says...

Crossed arms? - Check
Frowning pensioners? - Check
"Edgy" camera angle? - Check
It's an Adver Moany Photo Op! .....oh no, hang on, Anne Snelgrove's not there!! FAIL.
Crossed arms? - Check Frowning pensioners? - Check "Edgy" camera angle? - Check It's an Adver Moany Photo Op! .....oh no, hang on, Anne Snelgrove's not there!! FAIL. EmmBee

9:30am Fri 14 Feb 14

StillPav says...

Why don't they use the massively over funded and under utilised Dial-A-Ride service?
Why don't they use the massively over funded and under utilised Dial-A-Ride service? StillPav

9:36am Fri 14 Feb 14

Robh says...

Why not run the 24 on the old 12 route?
Why not run the 24 on the old 12 route? Robh

9:49am Fri 14 Feb 14

Hmmmf says...

StillPav wrote:
Why don't they use the massively over funded and under utilised Dial-A-Ride service?
Because they'd have to pay for that. It calls itself a charity but charges its customers. Passenger fares are used to help pay the running costs of the vehicles.
[quote][p][bold]StillPav[/bold] wrote: Why don't they use the massively over funded and under utilised Dial-A-Ride service?[/p][/quote]Because they'd have to pay for that. It calls itself a charity but charges its customers. Passenger fares are used to help pay the running costs of the vehicles. Hmmmf

10:15am Fri 14 Feb 14

Highworth Lad says...

I have to wander though, how many of them actually use cars.....
I have to wander though, how many of them actually use cars..... Highworth Lad

12:03pm Fri 14 Feb 14

Davey Gravey says...

Don't fancy their chances much. I suggest they share taxis on shopping trips. Or ask family to help of they need transport
Don't fancy their chances much. I suggest they share taxis on shopping trips. Or ask family to help of they need transport Davey Gravey

12:08pm Fri 14 Feb 14

jimmys lovechild says...

Surely the only reason it was withdrawn to start with is nobody used it anyway. The bus company aren't going to take off a profitable service are they?
Surely the only reason it was withdrawn to start with is nobody used it anyway. The bus company aren't going to take off a profitable service are they? jimmys lovechild

1:09pm Fri 14 Feb 14

Oldswindonian says...

Looking like that, nobody would let them on a bus anyway!
Looking like that, nobody would let them on a bus anyway! Oldswindonian

1:14pm Fri 14 Feb 14

The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man says...

If section 106 money is available, there's far more important things to spend it on that benefit everyone, not just a small number of pensioners in Blunsdon.
If section 106 money is available, there's far more important things to spend it on that benefit everyone, not just a small number of pensioners in Blunsdon. The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man

1:46pm Fri 14 Feb 14

trolley dolley says...

They all have folded arms so this is serious.

Also one of the locals thinks it is the middle of summer. (shorts and t shirt)

Just as well there are no buses, he would freeze to death in this weather.
They all have folded arms so this is serious. Also one of the locals thinks it is the middle of summer. (shorts and t shirt) Just as well there are no buses, he would freeze to death in this weather. trolley dolley

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