Louth residents voice fears over possible cuts to public transport

Lincolnshire County Council EMN-140610-143022001
Lincolnshire County Council EMN-140610-143022001

Local residents have raised concerns over possible cuts to public transport services following a meeting of the Louth Area Committee.

Anita Ruffle, Transport Manager with Lincolnshire County Council, was present at the meeting last Monday (September 29) and said that the County Council will need to make £90 million of savings next year, which will affect many services - potentially including cuts to public transport.

Speaking after the meeting, Anita Ruffle said: “A number of options are currently being considered, one of which would see our service area receive around 70 per cent of its current funding.

“Once we know next year’s budget allocation, we will conduct a review of all supported transport services but until then, it is difficult to predict the impact on specific services.

“We appreciate that public transport is a valued service and we will continue to offer as much as possible within the budget available.”

County Councillor Sarah Dodds said: “All of us who rely on public transport, as well as local business owners, should be really concerned about the possibility of any cuts to local routes.

“Good public transport has a crucial role, not just in helping rural and town centre businesses survive, but also to promote physical and mental health.

“I fear that the long term costs of any cuts will far outweigh any short term financial savings and have a detrimental impact on our communities”.

Labour’s Matthew Brown, who is challenging for the Louth and Horncastle seat at next year’s general election, contacted the Leader and pledged to “fight for the investment that the region needs” in terms of transport funding.

Louth resident Andrew Babb said: “Rural public transport isn’t great at the moment. Without completely stopping it I struggle to see how it could get much worse”.

Fellow resident Ros Jackson added: “I can’t travel by train on a Sunday, because there are no buses from Grimsby or Lincoln. And no late buses means there’s no chance of attending evening events in Lincoln, Grimsby, or anywhere beyond walking distance.”

• What do you think? Do you value public transport services in our area? Email louthleader@jpress.co.uk