County council urged to reconsider cuts to Ribble Valley countryside services

County council urged to reconsider cuts to Ribble Valley countryside services

County council urged to reconsider cuts to Ribble Valley countryside services

First published in News Lancashire Telegraph: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

LANCASHIRE County Council (LCC) has been urged to ‘think again’ over plans to cut evening and Sunday bus services in the Ribble Valley.

The borough council has sent a letter objecting ‘in the strongest possible terms’ to the proposals following the completion of a public consultation.

The feedback from the consultation is to be published in February, the county council said.

County Hall currently subsidies a number of bus services across Lancashire, which costs them £8million each year.

The proposal protects the majority of bus services but services to Blackburn, Burnley and Preston would be affected.

The borough council’s stance has been supported by county councillors for the Ribble Valley.

Nine routes would be affected if the plans are approved including Longridge to Clitheroe, Clitheroe to Nelson, and Skipton to Preston. Villages including Gisburn, Ribchester, Chipping, Read, Whalley and Waddington would also be hit by the change.

In a letter to LCC Bill Alker, community development officer at Ribble Valley Borough Council, said: “Ribble Valley is a predominantly rural area and, as such, public transport is not only highly- valued but much needed for those without a car.

“Many of the routes you are recommending to axe currently enable people from villages to travel into larger towns such as Blackburn and Burnley.”

He added the ‘further cuts’ were ‘inconsistent with the concept of ‘localism’ and will do nothing for rural mobility’.

“We would ask LCC to think again and, more importantly ‘think rural’ when considering any cuts to bus services.”

County Coun John Fillis, cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “We would never have chosen to be in this financial situation but have to find ways to drastically reduce our budget due to cuts by central government. Our first priority is to safeguard the most vulnerable members of our society but to achieve this we have to look at everything we do and propose some difficult solutions.”

Comments (3)

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10:00pm Wed 22 Jan 14

Jack Herer says...

Labour are a sick, shameless joke in charge of LCC.

They are happy to squander millions elsewhere, but are cutting essential travel services in people's lives - because its something they can cite in their tired, ever repeated blame of the cuts.

No cuts to efficiency. No difference to the vast swathes of unnecessary management. Instead it is cuts to services that really matter to real people, and all for cheap political points.

What a disgrace.
Labour are a sick, shameless joke in charge of LCC. They are happy to squander millions elsewhere, but are cutting essential travel services in people's lives - because its something they can cite in their tired, ever repeated blame of the cuts. No cuts to efficiency. No difference to the vast swathes of unnecessary management. Instead it is cuts to services that really matter to real people, and all for cheap political points. What a disgrace. Jack Herer
  • Score: 8

7:02am Thu 23 Jan 14

AnthonyUK says...

Nobody cares about anybody who has to get home during the day, at night and at weekends when people want to go out and don't have a car or can't drive like me! Is it fair that somebody can go out during the day and then can't get back home because the last service went at 3 or 4pm? NO it ain't!
Nobody cares about anybody who has to get home during the day, at night and at weekends when people want to go out and don't have a car or can't drive like me! Is it fair that somebody can go out during the day and then can't get back home because the last service went at 3 or 4pm? NO it ain't! AnthonyUK
  • Score: 8

3:04pm Thu 23 Jan 14

Noiticer says...

Just a reminder to Ribble Valley councillors - it is their party in power at Westminster which has made the savage cuts in spending to local authorites and imposed a Council Tax freeze so little wonder there are going to be massive cuts to bus services which require subsidies. More savage cuts across all council services in 2014 - happy New Year!!
Just a reminder to Ribble Valley councillors - it is their party in power at Westminster which has made the savage cuts in spending to local authorites and imposed a Council Tax freeze so little wonder there are going to be massive cuts to bus services which require subsidies. More savage cuts across all council services in 2014 - happy New Year!! Noiticer
  • Score: 0

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