(Latest updates at the bottom of page)
Many people have written to me about the state of buses in Bristol.
Cancellations and delays are a regular occurrence, which has led to public distrust in buses and fewer people using them. If we want to meet our Net Zero goals, we need a functioning and viable public bus service.
While there is some funding available, current government policies mean there are many blocks in how this funding can be used.
The No. 47 (previously the No. 5) is set to be one of the number of routes to be axed from April. It is a perfect example of this vicious cycle.
I have been lobbying First Bus and West of England Mayor for better buses. I have stressed the importance of the No. 47 and many other bus routes across Bristol, particularly for vulnerable people but frankly for lots of us trying to make ends meet in a cost-of-living crisis.
The responses I received from my recent survey were shocking. People unable to get to work or their weekly shop. Others feeling that without a bus they would be a “prisoner in [their] own home” (their words).
All of this could be avoided by giving people power and public control of local bus services. The government could choose to make it simpler for communities to spend public money on what matters most to them. This is what a Labour will do through our ‘Take Back Control Act’ if we win the next General Election.
If you would like to share your views on the No. 47 and the wider bus network in Bristol, complete my survey here.
I will be sharing the results of this survey with First Bus and the Metro Mayor without any individual names.
I promise to always hold those in power to account to ensure Bristol has an affordable and well-connected buses.
Update (April 2023)
After weeks of campaigning (by me, Labour volunteers, and community campaigners), I am pleased to announce that a new bus will be replacing the No. 47 – which is going to be axed from April.
The new No. 25 bus is being run by Transpora Group and will be an hourly service between the City Centre and Horfield Common/Southmead Hospital. It will begin operations from 1st April 2023, meaning residents of St Pauls and St Werburghs will not be left without a bus service for even a single day.
The No. 25 route will service all the stops between Eastgate Centre and the City Centre (Broad Quay) that the No. 47 currently services.
You can find the bus timings here: http://www.transporabus.co.uk/route-25
While the No. 25 will be an hourly service on weekdays (no buses on Sat and Sun), I know just how vital and popular this route is. Therefore, I will push Transpora to expand the frequency in the near future.
I am thankful to everyone who responded to my petition and survey.
Despite this small win, there is a lot more needed to be done to improve bus connectivity in Bristol. I will continue to push private companies, WECA and Bristol City Council to ensure all Bristolians have access to an affordable and well-connected public bus service.
Update (August 2023)
I am happy to announce that Transpora will be extending the No. 25 service to Saturdays as well, from 3rd September 2023.
Find the new timetable here: 25 timetable (A5) – Transpora Bus (cdn-website.com)