Shropshire Star

Website launched in campaign for reliable bus services in rural Shropshire

A new website to campaign for the need of a reliable bus service in rural areas of Shropshire has been launched.


The Shropshire-wide Bus Upgrade Project went live this month and is run by like-minded people with the 'main objective of achieving significant improvements in bus services' in the county.

The project is funded by the Foundation for Integrated Transport.

The premise of the project is based on a report comparing Shropshire with those countries and regions such as Sweden, Switzerland and Germany that value their rural residents, support rural life and provide guaranteed high-quality rural buses.

On the website, which can be found at, the vision of the group is laid out as being that buses are 'vital to millions of people who require access to shops, doctors, hospitals, colleges, schools, work places or to visit friends and family.

"This is more important in rural areas, villages and small towns than urban areas where many destinations are close at hand.

"Sadly bus usage and the routes outside of London have seen a steady decline in the last 20 years or so and are not up to the task of supporting thriving villages and communities like those in rural Shropshire.


"Funding has been halved in the last eight years, leaving many places without public transport and making life very difficult for rural residents to get about easily.

"They are vital to those who may not have their own transport or are not able to drive."

The project has the backing of Shrewsbury-based Professor John Whitelegg, an expert on transport who has advised the German ministry and the Stockholm Environment Institute on road safety and zero carbon transport.

He was also a professor of transport at Roskilde University in Denmark and now leads two Shropshire campaigns: the 20's Plenty campaign to improve road safety by reducing the speed limits on residential roads to 20mph and a bid to improve bus services.

He is joined by Robert Thompson, a former bus conductor who runs his own bus company in Shropshire which provides sightseeing trips, rail replacement services and private hire.

He said: "I recognise the need for improved bus services for the greater good of the communities. I am involved in this project to help with rural bus services and to work in partnership with councils, operators and community groups in this challenging time in the industry."

The website contains case studies and useful contacts.