Protest at proposed bus service changes in Martinstown

Protest at proposed bus service changes in Martinstown

Protest at proposed bus service changes in Martinstown

First published in News
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MORE than 200 protesters gathered to voice their anger at proposed changes to a village’s ‘vital’ bus service.

Bus operator First Dorset has announced plans to change the popular 31 bus service, which will be renamed the X31 from Sunday and will call at Martinstown only twice daily instead of hourly.

Upset villagers say they would have to walk two miles to the nearest bus stop on the A35, or travel by car or taxi if the service is cut.

They gathered on Saturday to protest the changes, with many holding banners and placards and chanting at one of the buses as it went past.

They said it was ‘not an aggressive statement’ but an opportunity for the village to ‘speak with one voice’ about the importance of the service.

They were joined by West Dorset MP Oliver Letwin who has spoken out about the loss of rural bus services.

Mr Letwin said: “Martins-town is quite a long way from the A35, it’s a long walk.

“There are quite a lot of people in the village that need to use the service throughout the day, and once in the morning and once in the evening is not enough.

“I am hoping that for the next six months we can get the three extra buses that First offered and that the county council will pay for it, but all three parties need to work together to find a better solution for the villagers.

“The bus company has to operate as a commercial operator so I can understand where they are coming from but we need to find a solution for residents.”

Keith Howat, pictured inset above, who helped organise the protest and petition, said: “The point is we are not just saving a bus but a way of life for the villagers.

“My daughter uses the bus to get to college and if the service stops, we will have to pay for a taxi to Dorchester, which will cost us about £10 per day.

“We have a nursing home in the village and the staff would have to walk two miles to get to and from work, which is simply not good enough.

“We live in a world where the government and media are talking about global warming and concerns for the environment and how we should catch the bus, but how can we when there is no bus?”

A spokesman for First has said the main reason for the change is to improve the reliability of the service and match the resources in use against demand.

Villager Kath Wilson, pictured inset left, said: “I use the bus for everything, whether it’s shopping or socialising. I suffer from depression and anxiety and I use the bus to get out and meet my friends as well as do chores. It is vital for me, I am absolutely devastated about the plans.”

Michaela Howat, pictured inset above right, who organised the protest, said: “This is not an aggressive statement to First. We just wanted to show them we need the service and we need to work together to find a solution.”

Resident Deborah Daw said: “My two sons, aged 21 and 23, are taking their final exams at university and are planning to come back to live and work here and they will rely on the bus. The bus would enable them to stay in the village and work elsewhere.

“Without the bus service I am not sure they will stay, it has totally changed their plans and they are looking to move away.”

Comments (28)

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4:54pm Sat 17 May 14

Rocksalt says...

Let's be honest, it were that 'popular' then First probably wouldn't be reducing the service.

Anyway, in future, whenever we have stories of this nature please can we have soke figures as to how many people actually travel on the route. How many people pay for their fare and, if apppicable, the cost in subsidy of each journey. Without this information it's impossible to form a view either way as to whether a continued bus service is the best answer or whether any available money might be better used to subsidise travel in some other way.
Let's be honest, it were that 'popular' then First probably wouldn't be reducing the service. Anyway, in future, whenever we have stories of this nature please can we have soke figures as to how many people actually travel on the route. How many people pay for their fare and, if apppicable, the cost in subsidy of each journey. Without this information it's impossible to form a view either way as to whether a continued bus service is the best answer or whether any available money might be better used to subsidise travel in some other way. Rocksalt
  • Score: 7

5:03pm Sat 17 May 14

Rocksalt says...

I might add that this Oliver Letwin is being very disingenuous. He knows full well that local authorities must reduce spending considerably. Subsidising bus routes may be important, but is bound to lose out in the face of competition for resources from statutory responsibilities such as child protection. With councils having to reduce budgets by a third there have to be losers, particularly as some budgets have been ring-fenced leaving others even more vulnerable. Its the same dilemna facing local authorities in respect of libraries and parks. Letwin knows all this.
I might add that this Oliver Letwin is being very disingenuous. He knows full well that local authorities must reduce spending considerably. Subsidising bus routes may be important, but is bound to lose out in the face of competition for resources from statutory responsibilities such as child protection. With councils having to reduce budgets by a third there have to be losers, particularly as some budgets have been ring-fenced leaving others even more vulnerable. Its the same dilemna facing local authorities in respect of libraries and parks. Letwin knows all this. Rocksalt
  • Score: 7

6:07pm Sat 17 May 14

westbaywonder says...

Anyone wants a lift, then contact Maggie at Poundbury,she would be only to pleased to help her neighbours just down the hill.
Anyone wants a lift, then contact Maggie at Poundbury,she would be only to pleased to help her neighbours just down the hill. westbaywonder
  • Score: -5

10:21pm Sat 17 May 14

Zummerzet Lad says...

Oliver needs to get the Government to allow bus companies to cross - subsidise routes as they did before deregulation
Oliver needs to get the Government to allow bus companies to cross - subsidise routes as they did before deregulation Zummerzet Lad
  • Score: 8

10:59am Sun 18 May 14

Sigurd Hoeberth says...

westbaywonder wrote:
Anyone wants a lift, then contact Maggie at Poundbury,she would be only to pleased to help her neighbours just down the hill.
Maggie doesn't do Oiks !
[quote][p][bold]westbaywonder[/bold] wrote: Anyone wants a lift, then contact Maggie at Poundbury,she would be only to pleased to help her neighbours just down the hill.[/p][/quote]Maggie doesn't do Oiks ! Sigurd Hoeberth
  • Score: 1

6:20pm Sun 18 May 14

Dorset Guy1 says...

Congratulations to the commenters on this item at last the information on which we and indeed the council and councillors need, to come to a proper decision is being spoken of - how can we know how many people used this or any other bus unless the loadings are published. Hiding behind commercial sensitivity is pointless especially if an operator is pulling out. This is the info another operator needs to calculate if it were worth re routing or extending another service.
Congratulations to the commenters on this item at last the information on which we and indeed the council and councillors need, to come to a proper decision is being spoken of - how can we know how many people used this or any other bus unless the loadings are published. Hiding behind commercial sensitivity is pointless especially if an operator is pulling out. This is the info another operator needs to calculate if it were worth re routing or extending another service. Dorset Guy1
  • Score: 2

8:43pm Sun 18 May 14

Micke12 says...

I agree that figures of usage should be given, but to be honest, every time I have used that service to go from Weymouth to Bridport, I have found that there are less than 15 people on the bus.

Let us assume, and yes, I know assumptions are dangerous, but let us assume anyway, for just a moment, that the ratio of paying passengers is about 40% and the ratio of pass users is 60%, then the company is making at most £45.00 in cash fares per journey and whatever the subsidy allowance is for bus companies these days, which I am lead to believe is about 25% of the normal fare. This means that this service is making about £70.00 per journey each way, ie, £140 on a round trip.

By the time you then take off the wages for the driver, the cost of the fuel, the road tax and maintenance costs, this route is running at pretty near making a loss. Without doubt, these buses are not fuel economic and because of the way different drivers drive, there are many maintenance issues effecting each and every one of these buses.

One could argue that they could release money from the routes that do make a profit to keep these non profit making routes running, but as a business, would you spend your profit in order to keep loss making services running - I think not.

To be honest, it is the fault of successive governments firstly giving elderly and disabled people free travel on buses in the first place, and then those same governments cutting back on the amount of subsidy given to the bus companies per pass using passenger. When the free pass service started, there was significant return from the treasury, through local councils, to keep the passes at least reasonable for the bus companies, but as the subsidy amounts reduced, the companies found that they are making a loss on most routes, but more so on the rural routes.

Is there an answer to this problem for rural bus service users - maybe, but it needs the support of the county councils and the service users.

First plan, as someone mentioned earlier, is to allow cross-county subsidies, so that two or more county councils could work together to support these rural services. I cannot, however, see the government agreeing to this, as it would effectively mean they admit making a mess of the thing when they stopped this kind of subsidy system.

Second plan, and I would be interested in people's views on this idea, would be to reinstate the old system of half fares for the elderly and disabled. When this system was in use in the seventies and eighties, it worked well and bus companies were able to make money to keep services running, although part of this was when the bus services were part of the National Bus Company, before Thatcher privatised them all. I wonder how many elderly and disabled people would be willing to pay the half fare system, if the government were to consider it.

At the moment though, unless people use the service sufficiently, the bus company has to do what is best for the business. maybe, if figures were produced and they were not hidden by the secrecy of business security, maybe some company like Damory or South West Coaches might offer the service for the residents of Martinstown. On an ecological theme, this would make good sense, but if only two or three people in that village use the service on any particular journey, it is not good business sense to provide the service, so the First Bus Company are right, financially, to withdraw the service from that area - it is pure economics - ecology versus fiscal sense.
I agree that figures of usage should be given, but to be honest, every time I have used that service to go from Weymouth to Bridport, I have found that there are less than 15 people on the bus. Let us assume, and yes, I know assumptions are dangerous, but let us assume anyway, for just a moment, that the ratio of paying passengers is about 40% and the ratio of pass users is 60%, then the company is making at most £45.00 in cash fares per journey and whatever the subsidy allowance is for bus companies these days, which I am lead to believe is about 25% of the normal fare. This means that this service is making about £70.00 per journey each way, ie, £140 on a round trip. By the time you then take off the wages for the driver, the cost of the fuel, the road tax and maintenance costs, this route is running at pretty near making a loss. Without doubt, these buses are not fuel economic and because of the way different drivers drive, there are many maintenance issues effecting each and every one of these buses. One could argue that they could release money from the routes that do make a profit to keep these non profit making routes running, but as a business, would you spend your profit in order to keep loss making services running - I think not. To be honest, it is the fault of successive governments firstly giving elderly and disabled people free travel on buses in the first place, and then those same governments cutting back on the amount of subsidy given to the bus companies per pass using passenger. When the free pass service started, there was significant return from the treasury, through local councils, to keep the passes at least reasonable for the bus companies, but as the subsidy amounts reduced, the companies found that they are making a loss on most routes, but more so on the rural routes. Is there an answer to this problem for rural bus service users - maybe, but it needs the support of the county councils and the service users. First plan, as someone mentioned earlier, is to allow cross-county subsidies, so that two or more county councils could work together to support these rural services. I cannot, however, see the government agreeing to this, as it would effectively mean they admit making a mess of the thing when they stopped this kind of subsidy system. Second plan, and I would be interested in people's views on this idea, would be to reinstate the old system of half fares for the elderly and disabled. When this system was in use in the seventies and eighties, it worked well and bus companies were able to make money to keep services running, although part of this was when the bus services were part of the National Bus Company, before Thatcher privatised them all. I wonder how many elderly and disabled people would be willing to pay the half fare system, if the government were to consider it. At the moment though, unless people use the service sufficiently, the bus company has to do what is best for the business. maybe, if figures were produced and they were not hidden by the secrecy of business security, maybe some company like Damory or South West Coaches might offer the service for the residents of Martinstown. On an ecological theme, this would make good sense, but if only two or three people in that village use the service on any particular journey, it is not good business sense to provide the service, so the First Bus Company are right, financially, to withdraw the service from that area - it is pure economics - ecology versus fiscal sense. Micke12
  • Score: 7

9:10pm Sun 18 May 14

unexpected error says...

The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.
The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think. unexpected error
  • Score: 9

10:06pm Sun 18 May 14

Micke12 says...

unexpected error wrote:
The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.
I agree totally with you unexpected error, but when I placed this suggestion in a letter to the Transport Minister in August 2012, I got a reply basically saying, 'good idea sir, but no chance'.

With a government response like that, how are we ever going to make public transport effective and also good for the service provider.

As I said earlier, there is no way the government can backtrack on this pass system now as they would be made the laughing stock.

So, for now, service providers are just going to keep cutting services. The only other way to solve this problem is to bring back cross county subsidising of bus services so the cost is spread across two or more county councils.
[quote][p][bold]unexpected error[/bold] wrote: The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.[/p][/quote]I agree totally with you unexpected error, but when I placed this suggestion in a letter to the Transport Minister in August 2012, I got a reply basically saying, 'good idea sir, but no chance'. With a government response like that, how are we ever going to make public transport effective and also good for the service provider. As I said earlier, there is no way the government can backtrack on this pass system now as they would be made the laughing stock. So, for now, service providers are just going to keep cutting services. The only other way to solve this problem is to bring back cross county subsidising of bus services so the cost is spread across two or more county councils. Micke12
  • Score: 5

11:10pm Sun 18 May 14

happyhector71 says...

Micke12 wrote:
unexpected error wrote:
The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.
I agree totally with you unexpected error, but when I placed this suggestion in a letter to the Transport Minister in August 2012, I got a reply basically saying, 'good idea sir, but no chance'.

With a government response like that, how are we ever going to make public transport effective and also good for the service provider.

As I said earlier, there is no way the government can backtrack on this pass system now as they would be made the laughing stock.

So, for now, service providers are just going to keep cutting services. The only other way to solve this problem is to bring back cross county subsidising of bus services so the cost is spread across two or more county councils.
Now it is in place....NO serving government will rescind the free bus pass. the pure and simple reason for this is THEY WILL LOSE THE VERY NEXT ELECTION.

This idea has been banded around for a few years now, and although they will never openly admit too this fact, we all know it to be true.

Since the wonderful Government introduced this scheme nearly 10 years ago The subsidy provided to operators has reduced significantly along with the withdrawral of the Fuel subsidy means as stated by many previously the cost of running services has increased with little/no extra income.

Although i feel for the residents of Martinstown, everyone seems to have forgotten the fate of the 47 ( Bridport to Yeovil ).... No mention has been made anywhere in the press from what i can see..... But this Service ENDS on Saturday 28TH June..... For me that means that my son now has no way of getting to college in Yeovil for the 3rd year of his 3 year course.
[quote][p][bold]Micke12[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]unexpected error[/bold] wrote: The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.[/p][/quote]I agree totally with you unexpected error, but when I placed this suggestion in a letter to the Transport Minister in August 2012, I got a reply basically saying, 'good idea sir, but no chance'. With a government response like that, how are we ever going to make public transport effective and also good for the service provider. As I said earlier, there is no way the government can backtrack on this pass system now as they would be made the laughing stock. So, for now, service providers are just going to keep cutting services. The only other way to solve this problem is to bring back cross county subsidising of bus services so the cost is spread across two or more county councils.[/p][/quote]Now it is in place....NO serving government will rescind the free bus pass. the pure and simple reason for this is THEY WILL LOSE THE VERY NEXT ELECTION. This idea has been banded around for a few years now, and although they will never openly admit too this fact, we all know it to be true. Since the wonderful Government introduced this scheme nearly 10 years ago The subsidy provided to operators has reduced significantly along with the withdrawral of the Fuel subsidy means as stated by many previously the cost of running services has increased with little/no extra income. Although i feel for the residents of Martinstown, everyone seems to have forgotten the fate of the 47 ( Bridport to Yeovil ).... No mention has been made anywhere in the press from what i can see..... But this Service ENDS on Saturday 28TH June..... For me that means that my son now has no way of getting to college in Yeovil for the 3rd year of his 3 year course. happyhector71
  • Score: 18

7:31am Mon 19 May 14

Rocksalt says...

For what it's worth, I am very dubious about cross-subsidising routes. In this area, on practice this would mean, for example, less well-off people on Portland subsidising bus services for wealthy villages and /or relatively well off pensioners who getting free travel.
For what it's worth, I am very dubious about cross-subsidising routes. In this area, on practice this would mean, for example, less well-off people on Portland subsidising bus services for wealthy villages and /or relatively well off pensioners who getting free travel. Rocksalt
  • Score: 2

7:58am Mon 19 May 14

navelgazer says...

unexpected error wrote:
The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.
Another consideration is that those who use free bus passes are taking the opportunity to get out and about (good for their health and well-being), and are therefore likely to spend money at their destination (good for traders and businesses)..
[quote][p][bold]unexpected error[/bold] wrote: The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.[/p][/quote]Another consideration is that those who use free bus passes are taking the opportunity to get out and about (good for their health and well-being), and are therefore likely to spend money at their destination (good for traders and businesses).. navelgazer
  • Score: -1

8:15am Mon 19 May 14

Rocksalt says...

navelgazer wrote:
unexpected error wrote:
The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.
Another consideration is that those who use free bus passes are taking the opportunity to get out and about (good for their health and well-being), and are therefore likely to spend money at their destination (good for traders and businesses)..
On the other hand, Weymouth and Portland BC provides free bus passes enabling people to spend money in Dorchester, which seems a little odd.
[quote][p][bold]navelgazer[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]unexpected error[/bold] wrote: The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.[/p][/quote]Another consideration is that those who use free bus passes are taking the opportunity to get out and about (good for their health and well-being), and are therefore likely to spend money at their destination (good for traders and businesses)..[/p][/quote]On the other hand, Weymouth and Portland BC provides free bus passes enabling people to spend money in Dorchester, which seems a little odd. Rocksalt
  • Score: 0

8:28am Mon 19 May 14

railwaychickenboy6 says...

Controversial maybe be would a nominal £1 fee plus your bus pass for each journey be a solution?
Controversial maybe be would a nominal £1 fee plus your bus pass for each journey be a solution? railwaychickenboy6
  • Score: 4

8:50am Mon 19 May 14

navelgazer says...

Rocksalt wrote:
navelgazer wrote:
unexpected error wrote:
The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.
Another consideration is that those who use free bus passes are taking the opportunity to get out and about (good for their health and well-being), and are therefore likely to spend money at their destination (good for traders and businesses)..
On the other hand, Weymouth and Portland BC provides free bus passes enabling people to spend money in Dorchester, which seems a little odd.
No two-way traffic, then?
[quote][p][bold]Rocksalt[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]navelgazer[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]unexpected error[/bold] wrote: The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.[/p][/quote]Another consideration is that those who use free bus passes are taking the opportunity to get out and about (good for their health and well-being), and are therefore likely to spend money at their destination (good for traders and businesses)..[/p][/quote]On the other hand, Weymouth and Portland BC provides free bus passes enabling people to spend money in Dorchester, which seems a little odd.[/p][/quote]No two-way traffic, then? navelgazer
  • Score: -1

9:13am Mon 19 May 14

Rocksalt says...

navelgazer wrote:
Rocksalt wrote:
navelgazer wrote:
unexpected error wrote:
The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.
Another consideration is that those who use free bus passes are taking the opportunity to get out and about (good for their health and well-being), and are therefore likely to spend money at their destination (good for traders and businesses)..
On the other hand, Weymouth and Portland BC provides free bus passes enabling people to spend money in Dorchester, which seems a little odd.
No two-way traffic, then?
I am sure there is, but not sufficient for it to be cost neutral. Or are you suggesting that an equal number of people travel from Dorchester to spend money in Weymouth ?
[quote][p][bold]navelgazer[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Rocksalt[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]navelgazer[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]unexpected error[/bold] wrote: The free bus pass has killed the local bus service in my view. When I get on a bus, not very frequently it has to be said, I bet I'm one of two on there who is actually paying. I think the majority on those on a free bus pass would rather pay and retain their service so maybe it's time for a re-think.[/p][/quote]Another consideration is that those who use free bus passes are taking the opportunity to get out and about (good for their health and well-being), and are therefore likely to spend money at their destination (good for traders and businesses)..[/p][/quote]On the other hand, Weymouth and Portland BC provides free bus passes enabling people to spend money in Dorchester, which seems a little odd.[/p][/quote]No two-way traffic, then?[/p][/quote]I am sure there is, but not sufficient for it to be cost neutral. Or are you suggesting that an equal number of people travel from Dorchester to spend money in Weymouth ? Rocksalt
  • Score: 0

10:28am Mon 19 May 14

Zummerzet Lad says...

The cross subsidy system used when I was working for Southern National was the part of the profits from a good town route subsidised the rural routes.
The cross subsidy system used when I was working for Southern National was the part of the profits from a good town route subsidised the rural routes. Zummerzet Lad
  • Score: 1

10:48am Mon 19 May 14

notweymouth says...

If 200 people want a bus, maybe they should buy and run their own?
If 200 people want a bus, maybe they should buy and run their own? notweymouth
  • Score: 0

11:07am Mon 19 May 14

Rocksalt says...

Zummerzet Lad wrote:
The cross subsidy system used when I was working for Southern National was the part of the profits from a good town route subsidised the rural routes.
As per my earlier example, this would mean in effect, for example bus users on Portland subsidising bus users in Martinstown. That is effectively a tax on a poorer area benefitting a wealthy area.
[quote][p][bold]Zummerzet Lad[/bold] wrote: The cross subsidy system used when I was working for Southern National was the part of the profits from a good town route subsidised the rural routes.[/p][/quote]As per my earlier example, this would mean in effect, for example bus users on Portland subsidising bus users in Martinstown. That is effectively a tax on a poorer area benefitting a wealthy area. Rocksalt
  • Score: 0

11:09am Mon 19 May 14

IDONTKNOWIFITISTRRUE says...

notweymouth says...If 200 people want a bus, maybe they should buy and run their own?
Alternatively, they could get together and hire a coach on a regular basis when enough of them can get organised to travel at the same time?
notweymouth says...If 200 people want a bus, maybe they should buy and run their own? Alternatively, they could get together and hire a coach on a regular basis when enough of them can get organised to travel at the same time? IDONTKNOWIFITISTRRUE
  • Score: -2

9:49pm Mon 19 May 14

Fich 26 says...

IDONTKNOWIFITISTRRUE wrote:
notweymouth says...If 200 people want a bus, maybe they should buy and run their own?
Alternatively, they could get together and hire a coach on a regular basis when enough of them can get organised to travel at the same time?
Do you think if they could afford to buy a coach/bus that they would be so upset?
This is a stupid comment from people that obviously know nothing of this community and of how this is likely to impact this local community.
My suggestion is that if you have nothing useful or constructive to say , then say nothing at all.
Before you start judging you need to know the demographic makeup of this village and not only this village, but others in Devon, Somerset and other surrounding Counties.
This isn't just a local problem in one village, its endemic across all the rural communities in the South West of England.
I hope this makes you think before you speak out with ignorance.
[quote][p][bold]IDONTKNOWIFITISTRRUE[/bold] wrote: notweymouth says...If 200 people want a bus, maybe they should buy and run their own? Alternatively, they could get together and hire a coach on a regular basis when enough of them can get organised to travel at the same time?[/p][/quote]Do you think if they could afford to buy a coach/bus that they would be so upset? This is a stupid comment from people that obviously know nothing of this community and of how this is likely to impact this local community. My suggestion is that if you have nothing useful or constructive to say , then say nothing at all. Before you start judging you need to know the demographic makeup of this village and not only this village, but others in Devon, Somerset and other surrounding Counties. This isn't just a local problem in one village, its endemic across all the rural communities in the South West of England. I hope this makes you think before you speak out with ignorance. Fich 26
  • Score: -1

9:53pm Mon 19 May 14

Fich 26 says...

Rocksalt wrote:
Zummerzet Lad wrote:
The cross subsidy system used when I was working for Southern National was the part of the profits from a good town route subsidised the rural routes.
As per my earlier example, this would mean in effect, for example bus users on Portland subsidising bus users in Martinstown. That is effectively a tax on a poorer area benefitting a wealthy area.
your sadly mislead. As if Portland would be seen as wealthy benefactor.
Have a reality check.
[quote][p][bold]Rocksalt[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Zummerzet Lad[/bold] wrote: The cross subsidy system used when I was working for Southern National was the part of the profits from a good town route subsidised the rural routes.[/p][/quote]As per my earlier example, this would mean in effect, for example bus users on Portland subsidising bus users in Martinstown. That is effectively a tax on a poorer area benefitting a wealthy area.[/p][/quote]your sadly mislead. As if Portland would be seen as wealthy benefactor. Have a reality check. Fich 26
  • Score: 0

9:59pm Mon 19 May 14

IDONTKNOWIFITISTRRUE says...

Fich 26
I intended to say that they could get together and hire a coach. If you are suggesting that they can't afford that, it implies that the buses that they have been using are subsidised by the rest of the taxpayers to make their journeys affordable.
Do you think that is fair?
Fich 26 I intended to say that they could get together and hire a coach. If you are suggesting that they can't afford that, it implies that the buses that they have been using are subsidised by the rest of the taxpayers to make their journeys affordable. Do you think that is fair? IDONTKNOWIFITISTRRUE
  • Score: 1

10:13pm Mon 19 May 14

Rocksalt says...

Fich 26 wrote:
Rocksalt wrote:
Zummerzet Lad wrote:
The cross subsidy system used when I was working for Southern National was the part of the profits from a good town route subsidised the rural routes.
As per my earlier example, this would mean in effect, for example bus users on Portland subsidising bus users in Martinstown. That is effectively a tax on a poorer area benefitting a wealthy area.
your sadly mislead. As if Portland would be seen as wealthy benefactor.
Have a reality check.
My point is that in this area any cross -subsidy would involve people in less wealthy parts of the county subsidising people in more wealthy areas. I am struggling to understand why I need to take a " reality check "?
[quote][p][bold]Fich 26[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Rocksalt[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Zummerzet Lad[/bold] wrote: The cross subsidy system used when I was working for Southern National was the part of the profits from a good town route subsidised the rural routes.[/p][/quote]As per my earlier example, this would mean in effect, for example bus users on Portland subsidising bus users in Martinstown. That is effectively a tax on a poorer area benefitting a wealthy area.[/p][/quote]your sadly mislead. As if Portland would be seen as wealthy benefactor. Have a reality check.[/p][/quote]My point is that in this area any cross -subsidy would involve people in less wealthy parts of the county subsidising people in more wealthy areas. I am struggling to understand why I need to take a " reality check "? Rocksalt
  • Score: 0

11:23am Tue 20 May 14

SouthWestBuses says...

There are two issues that need commenting on here.
One, the Manager of First, Simon Newport, has gone on record as saying that the reason for the ending of the 31 between Weymouth and Dorchester is that tree are not enough passengers on that section of the route.
I would suggest the manager prove this statement if he can as when I observe a 31 bus on this section of the route, as I do frequently, the bus is normally carrying a good number of passengers - regrettably however a large proportion of those are travelling for nothing so perhaps again its the pass holders make up the numbers to no commercial gain for First thus resulting in the service not being worthwhile.
As to Martinstown I strongly dispute the truth of what is being called a 'vital' bus service.
I have travelled on the 31 frequently between Weymouth and Axminster - and yes I pay a full fare - and NEVER once on all those journeys have I witnessed a single passenger board in Martinstown.
One again we have people who have ignored the bus service for years suddenly getting angry because a service they don't use is to be withdrawn.
Like other villages those who tend to complain are those who, if they use the bus at all, do so without paying. The supposed few who might pay to use the bus are simply not enough to sustain the service commercially.
You have chosen to ignore the bus service now you must accept that it will no longer be run for no purpose.
As to 'cross subsidisation' - why should a commercial company throw profit from good routes away on running buses round villages that don't use them - get real, the bus company is in business to make a profit not operate pointless and money losing routes.
If the bus company were to reprieve the Martinstown loop for a few months it should be a 'use it or loose it' offering - which would, based on past usage, simply prove the bus company's case for ending the pointless loop though Martinstown thus giving a more reliable service via the main road.
There are two issues that need commenting on here. One, the Manager of First, Simon Newport, has gone on record as saying that the reason for the ending of the 31 between Weymouth and Dorchester is that tree are not enough passengers on that section of the route. I would suggest the manager prove this statement if he can as when I observe a 31 bus on this section of the route, as I do frequently, the bus is normally carrying a good number of passengers - regrettably however a large proportion of those are travelling for nothing so perhaps again its the pass holders make up the numbers to no commercial gain for First thus resulting in the service not being worthwhile. As to Martinstown I strongly dispute the truth of what is being called a 'vital' bus service. I have travelled on the 31 frequently between Weymouth and Axminster - and yes I pay a full fare - and NEVER once on all those journeys have I witnessed a single passenger board in Martinstown. One again we have people who have ignored the bus service for years suddenly getting angry because a service they don't use is to be withdrawn. Like other villages those who tend to complain are those who, if they use the bus at all, do so without paying. The supposed few who might pay to use the bus are simply not enough to sustain the service commercially. You have chosen to ignore the bus service now you must accept that it will no longer be run for no purpose. As to 'cross subsidisation' - why should a commercial company throw profit from good routes away on running buses round villages that don't use them - get real, the bus company is in business to make a profit not operate pointless and money losing routes. If the bus company were to reprieve the Martinstown loop for a few months it should be a 'use it or loose it' offering - which would, based on past usage, simply prove the bus company's case for ending the pointless loop though Martinstown thus giving a more reliable service via the main road. SouthWestBuses
  • Score: 0

5:17am Wed 21 May 14

bootedsw says...

I thought this route was funded by network rail as a bus link to Lyme from Dorchester and Axminster. Yet that might have been in the past before it went through the villages.
I thought this route was funded by network rail as a bus link to Lyme from Dorchester and Axminster. Yet that might have been in the past before it went through the villages. bootedsw
  • Score: 0

9:03am Wed 21 May 14

SouthWestBuses says...

bootedsw wrote:
I thought this route was funded by network rail as a bus link to Lyme from Dorchester and Axminster. Yet that might have been in the past before it went through the villages.
I think you will find that the 31 is operated commercially by First and receives no subsidy from any other party- hence the decision made by the bus company to cut out pointless, money wasting, virtually unused diversions through villages that choose to ignore the service thus giving those who do use the service a better, more direct run along the main road.
Perhaps the 'invisible' users of Martinstown would be happy to pay a subsidy to cover the full cost to keep the bus travelling through their village to no purpose rather than expect users of other routes to subsidise them.
[quote][p][bold]bootedsw[/bold] wrote: I thought this route was funded by network rail as a bus link to Lyme from Dorchester and Axminster. Yet that might have been in the past before it went through the villages.[/p][/quote]I think you will find that the 31 is operated commercially by First and receives no subsidy from any other party- hence the decision made by the bus company to cut out pointless, money wasting, virtually unused diversions through villages that choose to ignore the service thus giving those who do use the service a better, more direct run along the main road. Perhaps the 'invisible' users of Martinstown would be happy to pay a subsidy to cover the full cost to keep the bus travelling through their village to no purpose rather than expect users of other routes to subsidise them. SouthWestBuses
  • Score: 0

1:46pm Wed 21 May 14

Micke12 says...

bootedsw wrote:
I thought this route was funded by network rail as a bus link to Lyme from Dorchester and Axminster. Yet that might have been in the past before it went through the villages.
I think you will find that a number of years ago, the 31 bus route was subsidised by two county authorities, Devon and Dorset. They then removed the subsidy from the route and it became just like any other bus route.

If I am wrong, I am sure there will be someone out there ready to correct me.
[quote][p][bold]bootedsw[/bold] wrote: I thought this route was funded by network rail as a bus link to Lyme from Dorchester and Axminster. Yet that might have been in the past before it went through the villages.[/p][/quote]I think you will find that a number of years ago, the 31 bus route was subsidised by two county authorities, Devon and Dorset. They then removed the subsidy from the route and it became just like any other bus route. If I am wrong, I am sure there will be someone out there ready to correct me. Micke12
  • Score: 0

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