Elderly lose No 26 battle
ELDERLY residents have slumped to defeat in their battle to keep the number 26 bus service as a lifeline to their community.
A shake-up of bus services by Thamesdown Transport has produced some amended and new routes, while scrapping others altogether.
Despite pleading with the council to save their essential transport links, people in Rodbourne will lose their service on October 27.
Richard Hurley, 75, of Montagu Street, said: “The whole of the community is going to be affected, and people are going to be left isolated in their homes. Some people cannot even get to the local shops now. Elderly people in this area relied on that service to go and do their shopping.
“What annoys me more than anything else is that they haven’t asked people in the area if they would be prepared to pay towards the cost of keeping the service running, because I am sure most people here would be.
“It should be down to our local councillors to fight these things for us, but it seems whatever we say does not affect the outcome.
“There are so many people round here who really relied on these bus services. One chap I was talking to this morning is stumped because he does not know what he will do without the buses running. We would all have to walk to the closest stop, but the nearest bus stop is Rodbourne Road and that is too far for most older people to walk.
“It is yet another example of hitting people the hardest who cannot deal with it, and imposing cuts on the defenceless.”
Thamesdown Transport is bringing in a number of other changes to its subsidised bus services to reflect a new strategy for supporting public transport.
Service 21 will run between Penhill Valley and Fleming Way only, making three return journeys a day from Monday to Saturday.
A new Service 23 will link Stratton Park and Coleview with Fleming Way, also making three return journeys a day from Monday to Saturday.
People using Service 22 will be able to travel between Okus, Old Town, Fleming Way, the Outlet Village, Bridgemead and Barnfield. The Fleming Way to Barnfield section of the service will be replaced by Service 29 and will remain financially supported by the council.
Service 22 will run every 30 minutes on Mondays to Saturdays. On Sundays it will run only between Fleming Way and Barnfield.
Service 26, which runs a circular route between the bus station and Rodbourne, will be withdrawn completely as support from Swindon Council ends.
Service 47, between Swindon, Wanborough, Bishopstone, Ashbury and Lambourn, will be withdrawn after operation on Saturday, October 26. A replacement bus service, Service 90, will be provided by the Go Ride bus company from Monday, October 28. This will not serve Lower Wanborough, and so more Thamesdown Service 46A and 48A journeys will run that way.
A new Service 46 and 48 timetable leaflet shows details, including other changes to Service 48 to improve timekeeping.
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