Rain

Rain

max temp: 13°C

min temp: 12°C

Search

The pigs are coming. Find out more about

Pigs Gone Wild

here.

Suffolk: Rural bus services in county suffer huge cut in subsidies – Labour

08:00 18 April 2014

Rural bus subsidies are cut

Rural bus subsidies are cut

Subsidies for rural bus services in Suffolk saw some of the biggest cuts in the country over the last four years according to new figures compiled by the Labour Party.

The amount spent supporting uneconomic bus services in the county was cut by half between 2010/11 and 2013/14. Only Northamptonshire with a 55% cut saw a more dramatic reduction in support for its rural buses.

Freedom of information requests by shadow local government minister Hilary Benn found that bus services across shire counties and unitary authorities had seen their grants cut by an average of 23% and 24% respectively.

Shire counties have cut their subsidies by 23% from an average of £5.62million in 2010/11 to £4.34m in 2013/14, while unitary authorities have undergone cuts of 24% from an average of £1.2m in 2010/11 to £0.91m in 2013/14.

In Suffolk the major cuts came in the budget of 2011, but the county council tried to ensure that no communities were left totally cut off from public transport.

Graham Newman has become cabinet member for transport since the cuts were introduced, but said the authority had no alternative but to cut subsidies.

He said “It’s all well and good the Labour party complaining about the reduction in bus subsidies. The sad fact is that Labour left this country bankrupt when they were voted out of power in 2010.

“The Coalition have had to address that issue, and local authority budgets have traditionally been the first call for successive Governments of all political colours when savings have been required.

“But here in Suffolk, we have largely maintained our supported passenger transport network since 2011, and in fact some services have flourished since that time, after becoming commercially operated.

“We have seen the return of some evening and Sunday services, particularly in the Bury St Edmunds area.

“SCC’s passenger transport team have worked hard with operators to produce profitable routes, and where that has not been possible, have introduced services like Demand Responsive Transport and have further supported Community Transport operators.”

Opposition transport spokeswoman Sanda Gage said: “While Suffolk County Council continues to focus on cutting funding rather than subsiding rural bus services, we will continue to read of bus routes being dropped by operators, communities without a regular bus service, and young people unable to get to work placements or training.

“I have recently asked that Graham Newman looks to extend the Endeavour Card age range from 16-19 to 16-24 years and offer it automatically to all apprentices, funded by the council.”

3 comments

  • If it was up to Labour we`d all be travelling by donkey!

    Report this comment

    Supernova6

    Friday, April 18, 2014

  • This is a party political broad cast by the Labour Party , on news over 3 years old ,

    Report this comment

    pandy

    Friday, April 18, 2014

  • Graham, so much for taking responsibility for your own department! Of course you weren't to blame for the economy, you were in charge of the Education authority at the time...how is Suffolk and it's schools doing now? Do you take responsibility for them instead?

    Report this comment

    Conan67

    Friday, April 18, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Dancer Gary Avis. Photograph Simon Parker

Renowned Royal Ballet star Gary Avis has said that Suffolk-based theatre group Co-Op Juniors took him in as a bullied young boy and helped turn him into the man he is today.

Claire Blair who died from breast cancer in February 2014.

A pledge to provide “a lasting legacy” to a woman who provided inspiration and encouragement to women battling cancer after she outlived her prognosis by seven years has been launched by her best friend.

The region’s ambulance service is still desperately short of its target for responding to the most serious medical emergencies, it’s latest figures have shown.

Two people have been charged after an incident in Tannington.

People living in one of the most sparsely-populated areas of Suffolk have been told there was no danger to the general public after an incident which resulted in two police officers receiving minor injuries.

There could be a few puddles across the region tomorrow morning after a yellow weather warning was issued for the East of England.

A yellow weather warning has been issued for the East of England tomorrow.

Director Helen Wheatley and members of the UCS choir at rehearsals.

Singing out for a very good cause in Ipswich

An East Anglian Air Ambulance and a land ambulance at the park in Dumbarton Road in Ipswich on Bank Holiday Monday morning.

A man is in hospital after being found unconscious in Ipswich this morning.

Classic car event on the seafront at Aldeburgh. Frank Cox next to a 1964 Hillman Super Minx.

More than 50 classic vehicles were on display along the Aldeburgh seafront today.

Former Blues and England skipper Terry Butcher opens Bawdsey village fete and dog show.

Ipswich Town legend Terry Butcher was on hand to open a village fete in Suffolk yesterday.

Jasmine Nicholls (left) and Klaudia Sokolowska

Two teenage girls from the Lowestoft area have been reported missing to the police.

Most read

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24