New bus for Oswestry charity as £10,000 appeal reaches target
An Oswestry charity is celebrating this week after raising more than £10,000 for a new bus.
The Qube community organisation, which operates Oswestry Dial-a-ride, launched the ‘Buy Us a Bus’ campaign last October to replace one of its older buses.
Members of the public, local organisations and businesses quickly responded to the urgent appeal for funding.
Qube chief officer, Laurel Roberts, said: “It’s absolutely fantastic, we’re really thrilled, local people and organisations have been so generous.
"It just shows how much the service is valued by the community. Dial-a-Ride supports some of the most vulnerable people in the community and it’s the only way some can visit friends and family, or get to appointments. This bus is going to be put to very good use."
She said Qube would like to thank the many private donors who have given money, as well as organisations like Oswestry Rotary Club, Star Housing, West Felton and St Martin’s Parish Councils and Much Wenlock Forester Trust and Stan’s Supermarket in St Martins.
The Hilton Jones Trust also agreed to donate a further £5,000 once the target was reached.
Store manager at Stan’s supermarket in St Martins, Justin Smart, said: ”We are happy to support the Dial-A-Ride bus appeal, it’s the only way some of our customers can do their shopping and many of them stay on afterwards for a cup of tea.
"We believe that anything that helps people to carry on living independently and stay connected with their friends and community has got to be a good thing.”
Qube currently runs a fleet of five buses and two community cars which operate in a ten mile radius of Oswestry. Between them they clock-up around 80,000 miles a year on Shropshire’s rural roads.
The week-day service is managed by two full-time members of staff and is operated by around thirty volunteer drivers and passenger assistants.
Qube is always on the look-out for more volunteers.
Transport Coordinator, Michelle Kelsall said: “The Dial-a-Ride volunteers really are the backbone of the service, we couldn’t run it without them.
"They are very kind to the passengers and do an amazing job. They’ve all helped to promote the ‘Buy Us a Bus’ appeal and are thrilled that we’ve reached the target and can now buy another vehicle for Dial-a-Ride.”
For more information about the Qube Buy Us a Bus Campaign, call Qube on 01691 656882 or visit www.qube-oca.org.uk