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Accrington pensioners 'stranded' by bus changes
DISABLED pensioners say they have been left ‘stranded’ after a bus company cancelled their lifeline route into town.
Residents at Park View sheltered accommodation, in Accrington, some of whom are in their 80s, are now being forced to walk to a bus stop about a quarter of a mile from their homes It means some are now having to opt for taxis or Dial A Ride services, which they are struggling to afford.
Irene Bradley, who lives at Park View, said the residents had been left feeling lost without the bus to take them out.
She said: “Most people in here are disabled and find it very difficult to walk to the bus stop. They are stranded because they cannot walk all that way with shopping.
“Because of this, people are having to pay for taxis out on their meagre pensions. They have bus passes, but now they can’t make use of what they are entitled to.
“They are really upset that they cannot go out and cannot meet with friends. It is such a shame.”
Bob Tuffnell, manager at M&M Coaches, in Craven Street, Accrington, which ran the service, said the decision had been made to cut the route was because of new, longer, low-floor buses, which could not turn on Somerset Grove. He said: “I know where the residents are coming from, but it is just one of those things. This is the best way we can do it, otherwise the council might take it off altogether.
“This is the way we feel we can continue the service in the safest way, but it is very regretful that some of the service has had to be cut.
“I am very sorry for any inconvenience but we have got to think of the safety of the people on the bus.”
Tim Gornall, Lancashire County Council bus and supported transport manager, said: “We have every sympathy with the residents and will provide details of local community transport services if they are unable to walk the short distance to the bus route.”
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