Letter: Public transport

Harrogate bus station. GS1405082a.
Harrogate bus station. GS1405082a.

Local bus services

The key question about timetables for bus users is: “Will I be able to get there and back, with enough time at the destination to complete the purpose of my journey?”

County councillors are considering a proposed cut of 40 per cent in subsidy for bus services in seven district council areas of North Yorkshire (Craven, Hambleton, Harrogate, Richmondshire, Ryedale, Scarborough and Selby). If implemented, these cuts would have far-reaching consequences for individual passengers, employers and the local economy, including tourist businesses,

I understand that the next date in the decision-making process is a meeting of the relevant scrutiny committee, to be held at County Hall, Northallerton, at 10am on Thursday, December 19. The agenda for this meeting, names of committee members and other information is on the county council’s website www.northyorks.gov.uk Members of the public may attend to hear the discussion; it is also worth checking whether there will be an opportunity to address the meeting or ask questions if the chairman is notified of details in advance.

During the recent public consultation, it was suggested to NYCC that cuts should be postponed until next autumn to:

(a) cover the busy tourist season, including the Yorkshire Grand Depart event in July;

(b) take account of responses received during the public consultation (ended November 25);

(c) allow for an informed review and assessment of the consequences of the proposed cuts;

(d) offer an opportunity to revise and improve the proposed timetables.

I hope that councillors will bear in mind the following comment from a report published by the Campaign for Better Transport:

“All policies that aim to improve local economies, tackle unemployment and ensure equal access to educational opportunities depend on buses.” (from The Crisis of Bus Provision in England, December 2012).

Ruth Annison

Askrigg, Leyburn