Transport cutbacks effect livelihoods
BUS passengers commuting between Ipswich and Rendlesham are having their livelihoods threatened by timetable cutbacks, it was claimed today.Unemployed Vince Rainford says the new service, which was introduced earlier this month, is restricting his options as he searches for work.
BUS passengers commuting between Ipswich and Rendlesham are having their livelihoods threatened by timetable cutbacks, it was claimed today.
Unemployed Vince Rainford says the new service, which was introduced earlier this month, is restricting his options as he searches for work.
The 33-year-old, of Thelluson, Rendlesham, has launched a petition against the cuts and has so far collected around 200 signatures.
"I'm now restricted to looking for nine to five jobs because of the bus timetables, he said.
"It's affecting my livelihood and other people's. People who work part time and do double shifts are having big problems getting to and from work. A lot of people rely on the buses, like I do."
The contract for the route, which is funded by a Rural Bus Services Grant (RSBG), was cut by Suffolk County Council to make it more cost effective.
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This has resulted in fewer bus services running between Rendlesham and Ipswich. It has also delayed some early morning services by around two hours, with routes beginning at 6.11am and 7.11am being axed. The first bus now leaves the village at around 8am.
This, according to Mr Rainford, has caused great inconvenience to commuters as it means they are only able to get to Ipswich just before 9am.
Mitchell Bradshaw, public transport manager of the county council, said: "RBSG contracts came to an end in early April and we had to retender the services. This gave us the opportunity to look at how well the services were being used.
"We've had to make some changes to some services that weren't being well-used to make them more cost effective whilst still trying to provide the right level of service for small communities."
He added the council had consulted community groups in changing the service but would consider suggestions about the service in the future.
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