OAPs fear bid to get rid of structure at bus stop
5:30am Thursday 20th February 2014 in By Beren Cross, @BerenCross
ELDERLY bus passengers are scared for their future health if proposals to remove their bus shelter are passed by Swindon Council.
A public consultation on the removal of the shelter near the south Tismeads Crescent junction of Croft Road on the north-east bound carriageway has been opened.
Residents around the area have been receiving requests for their views on the move, which would retain the bus stop but replace the shelter with a pole and sign.
The proposals have been drawn up in response to concerns from residents living behind the shelter, who have complained of antisocial behaviour and littering attracted by glass structure.
But those who rely on the bus for access to and from the town centre every day, have hit out at the plans and raised concerns for their own health if the refuge was removed.
Sheila Sutton, 85, of Glenwood Close, said: “I have used and relied on this bus stop for 25 years. I use the bus every day and can’t walk any further than this shelter.”
Winifred Sayer, 81, also of Glen-wood Close, said: “When we come up here with a cold when it is tipping down with rain, we would be soaking wet before we even go shopping to get our food.
“A lot of us are going to get pneumonia if this shelter is taken away.”
Many of those opposing the proposals are convinced the damage and poor behaviour associated with the shelter does not exist, and feel the reasons being given for the removal are not adequate.
The plans stem from the views of residents who live near the shelter. They have stuck a two-page letter on it to explain their reasons for wanting the stop downsized, citing five antisocial incidents since October.
When the Adver contacted them, they declined to comment.
Winifred has suggested a surveillance camera be installed to monitor any antisocial behaviour, rather than remove the shelter altogether.
Another resident, Nikki Dressler, 35, of Croft Road, said she had lived in the road her whole life and had never experienced antisocial behaviour in connection with the shelter.
A letter from Coun Claire Ellis, a prospective Conservative candidate for Old Town, has written to residents on the matter.
She said: “They (the residents) do not want the bus stop to be removed, but instead to be downsized.
“Unfortunately, it has become a hub for young people to congregate, leading to vandalism, noise and other criminal activity. The policing team are helping, but unfortunately they cannot always be present.”
Residents must submit comments before March 7 in writing to Swindon Council or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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