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Nottinghamshire County Council to launch £1.5m investment in rural bus services

A project to improve bus services in Newark and Sherwood and the wider county are set to benefit from a£1.5m grant as the government unveils the most ambitious shake-up of the bus sector in a generation.

Nottinghamshire County Council will receive £1,497,000 to pay for eight 16-seater, wheelchair-accessible buses, which will be bookable in advance.

John Cottee, chairman of the council’s communities and place committee, said: “The week has provided some great news for Nottinghamshire residents.

NottsBus Connect (45283964)
NottsBus Connect (45283964)

“We welcomed the announcement of the national bus strategy by the Prime Minister and we will work with local bus operators and adjoining local authorities to improve local bus services so people can access work, training, healthcare, shopping and leisure opportunities; as well as helping tackle congestion, air quality and climate change.

“The news is equally as positive and we are pleased to hear that we had been successful with our Rural Mobility Fund bid (£1.497m) to introduce a number of Demand Responsive Transport pilots across Nottinghamshire ­— in Rushcliffe, Ollerton and Mansfield.

These DRT pilots to improve local connectivity will be introduced in late 2021 and early 2022 following consultation with residents.”

The new services will help people living in Newark and Sherwood and the rural western areas of the Rushcliffe.

They will also benefit Bassetlaw, Ladybrook, Oak Tree and Berry Hill housing estates in Mansfield, providing better access to jobs, education, healthcare and leisure opportunities.

A well as boosting travel options for residents, the new service could help the thousands of visitors who visit the Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre every year.

The allocations from the Rural Mobility Fund come as the government launches its new National Bus Strategy, backed by £3bn of investment.

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