Petition calls for rural bus cuts in Dorset to be stopped

A petition has been started against the closure of bus routes in Dorset.

Dorset County Council plans to cut rural services costing over £5 per passenger and services carrying an average of less than seven passengers.

The Green Party is campaigning against the proposed cuts and has gathered more than 120 signatures online to date.

The petition along with letters from councillors and other organisations will be compiled into a report by the council's passenger transport team.

The council's cabinet will review the report and make its decision on the cuts on 6 November. The revised bus services will come into effect from January.

Other planned reductions include summer tourist services being withdrawn and cuts to evening and weekend services.

'Not empty'

Jane Burnet, of the West and South Dorset Green Party, said: "This is an opportunity to maintain pressure on the county council.

"We've scrutinised the list and on just about every route that is being cut there's an average of 10 passengers per journey, so these are not empty buses."

The party said the bus services should be funded from the £2.4m given to the council from the government's Local Sustainable Transport Fund.

Spencer Flower, leader of Dorset County Council, said: "Many of the rural buses have very little usage and we have had to look at ways of providing a better value for money service."

The council said there had also been successes with the volunteer-run neighbourcar and dial-a-car schemes across the county.

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