TRANSPORT Secretary Chris Grayling’s glibness demonstrates that he is not a regular bus user – he does, in fact, commute to and from Westminster by train each day.
However, if he travelled by bus, he would appreciate that this ‘Cinderella’ service is a lifeline to many and requires even greater investment, from both the public sector, and private operators, if more services are to be commensurate with the needs of passengers and an increasingly transient workforce.
Yet new research points to 500 routes being withdrawn because local councils simply can’t afford to run them.
Yes, there will be occurrences when services should be cut because passenger usage does not justify the subsidy level, but there are now occasions when cuts, coupled with reliability issues, impinge upon the ability of non-car users to get to and from work promptly.
Buses are a public service and Mr Grayling needs to find a change of gear in his approach.