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County seeks transport savings
8:30am Mon Apr 02, 2012
 
Consultation starts today over public transport services in Newark, Southwell and Ollerton as Nottinghamshire County Council looks to make savings of 10%.
The Newark area has been chosen for a pilot scheme looking at the use of commercial bus and rail services as well as voluntary, community and health transport.

The group manager for transport and travel services, Mr Mark Hudson, said at the moment £3m was spent in the area.

He said they hoped that by reorganising services and making them more efficient they would be able to find the savings.

He said: “We want to keep services that are important to local people and to find any gaps that need to be filled.”

Mr Hudson said while they wanted to ensure essential services were maintained they would be looking at those that were not well used so changes could be made.

He said they had chosen Newark for the pilot because it was a mix of urban and rural areas where there were often problems about accessibility.

He said a particular area they would be looking at was transport between Newark and Mansfield because of patients and visitors going to King’s Mill Hospital.

Mr Hudson said they wanted to encourage more people to use public bus services and would be asking what improvements they wanted to see.

They will also be looking at voluntary and community transport services, considering the possibility of using public transport for school journeys and enabling some people who use specialist transport to develop the skills to travel independently on public transport.

The cabinet member for highways and transport, Mr Richard Jackson, said: “We recognise that one size doesn’t fit all and there will be different solutions to meet local and specialist needs. This is where we need residents’ help.”

The consultation continues until May 11.

Mr Hudson said feedback would be used to help draw up proposals to go on show at public meetings and roadshows in June.

It is planned that any changes would be in place by the end of the year.

People can complete an online questionnaire at www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/titan or call 08449 808080 or visit their local library to complete an online or paper questionnaire.

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