Council thanks Derbyshire campaigner who makes bus timetable displays from milk cartons – as protest planned in Peak District town

Campaigners from Better Buses Derbyshire plan to stage a protest in support of better bus information in Bakewell.
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The group are calling for integrated public transport timetables to be produced in hard copy and web versions for bus users in Derbyshire.

Campaigners explained that currently, there were no paper timetables other than a few produced by individual bus operators, and most of Derbyshire bus-stops carried no information at all.

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Campaigner Chrissy Grocott, who has produced and printed limited numbers of public transport hub map leaflets to distribute to the public

Campaigner Chrissy Grocott made bus timetable displays from tetra pack milk cartons.Campaigner Chrissy Grocott made bus timetable displays from tetra pack milk cartons.
Campaigner Chrissy Grocott made bus timetable displays from tetra pack milk cartons.

She said: “How are people expected to use the buses when there is so little information available about where the buses go to, at what times and how they connect to trains? Not everyone has smart phones and it’s hard to get a signal in many rural areas.

"Derbyshire County Council and the bus operators need to work together to produce comprehensive, printed timetables covering the whole of Derbyshire, as they used to do before the pandemic. In other places like the Lake District, people can easily find attractive, printed copies of timetables. Why can’t we do this in Derbyshire?”

Campaigners from Better Buses Derbyshire plan to hold a protest at Rutland Square in Bakewell at 10 am on Saturday, April 6. They also plan to do surveys of passers-by in the town centre to find out how people travelled to Bakewell, whether they had considered using the bus and what is stopping them from using the buses more.

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Resident Georgina Blair said: “We are trying to set up a Bus Users Group in Bakewell so that local people have more of a voice and the council and bus operators will listen to what bus passengers want”

As well as getting printed timetables, the group also wants to see more information at bus stops.

Over a year ago Chrissy Grocott asked Derbyshire County Council to initiate a scheme to 'Adopt a bus stop' which would enable local people and parish councils to update bus stop information as and when necessary.

She received no considered response from DCC and has since made timetable displays from tetra pack milk cartons. Chrissy has now approached her local town council to see if they will consider sourcing funding for timetable cases. She has estimated it would cost only a few thousand pounds per parish council, and less than £300,000 for the whole county.

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A spokesperson for Derbyshire County Council said: “Thank you to Ms Grocott for highlighting this important issue and for everything she is doing to support the Bus Service Improvement Plan works and raising awareness of local bus services.

“We have been discussing bus stop and timetable information with Ms Grocott and we are working with bus operators on this too, as they also own many timetable cases.

"The county council have over 1800 timetable cases and there are now over 300 real time information signs across the county. We are working to increase these under the £47 million government-funded BSIP programme. We’re happy to work with local councils where they want to provide these.

“Alongside increasing information at bus stops, we’re also working to improve access to ‘on the go’ timetables, through the use of technology such as QR codes, developing the existing website and a new app.”

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