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It's a long day - Apprentices and Rural Transport

November 26, 2011 11:45 AM
By Liz Pym
Originally published by East Midlands Liberal Democrats

The apprenticeship scheme sounds great but what about those who live in rural areas with poor or no public transport? Jobs that are available are those for unsociable hours.

This apprenticeship programme does not help those in rural areas. My 19 year old grand-daughter has finally got herself a job which is only for 12 hours but a start - I brought her up. We get up at 3.50am in the morning for us to get ready and to leave at 4.30 am and earlier if the weather is bad for me to take her to Sainsburys in Banbury to be there for 4.55am. It is permanent and she has good academic qualifications and hope this will lead on to other things. What would happen if I did not have a car? The buses do not run that time in the morning. The buses here in rural Northamptonshire are geared towards people working in Banbury - last one now is 6.25 pm from Banbury (I do my main shopping here). However there are no bus services on Sunday.

I do know of someone from our village who has got an apprenticeship in Daventry but could not do it without a car as the last bus back from Daventry to our village is 5.20pm so anyone finishing at 5.30pm without their own transport has a problem. Don't suggest bikes as the lanes/roads are narrow and there is no pavement or cycle tracks and there are ditches either side of the road which cars and lorries have ended up in.

I want to know what the coalition is doing about public transport in rural areas. I know Northants has the CONNECT bus but you have to book the day before and it is often very late arriving and again they only run during the day to connect with the bus service in our village.

I would like the East Midlands Lib Dems to campaign for better public transport and to not concentrate on the HS2 railway which will cost billions of money we have not got.

By the way my son who lives near Birmingham and works there finds the fast non-stop rail link from Birmingham to London excellent - Chiltern Railway built a parallel line and introduced this very fast service from Birmingham to Marylebone this year - we therefore do not need this HS2. However it is no where near full and those waiting on the stations in between are not happy. By the way it was hoped that this non-stop service would cure over-crowding but no it has not as most of the people who use the trains are those who live in the areas between London and Birmingham. Chiltern Railways are looking into this - they did lengthen their platforms so are adding more carriages to the stopping trains. By the way if I was coming from abroad I would fly direct to Birmingham Airport - so much nicer than Heathrow. Before I retired people visiting our office from abroad flew to Birmingham and then came down by train to Banbury or hired a car.