LOCAL RESIDENTS are going to be asked to give information on their experiences and knowledge about local public transport in order to guide a council study on improving existing services, and on what new services might be made available in the future.
A new Hedon Town Council working group is being established that will review existing local transport services that serve the district. It will aim to discover where the needs of local residents are not being met. The new group, led by the town’s new Transport Champion, Councillor Steve Gallant, will identify these ‘unmet needs’ and assess whether new services can be provided to meet these needs.
The working group will, for example, examine existing bus services and determine whether improvements could be made. Councillor Gallant says that late-night buses will be a topic of study, particularly those that connect with the last train services into Hull on an evening. The working group will also assess whether new local or community transport services are needed and feasible, and whether new cost-effective schemes can be implemented:
“We will be reviewing whether some new services can be provided cost effectively to serve more local needs” said Councillor Gallant. “Hedon has a real problem with traffic and parking, and yet many other residents don’t have access to a car. Can new services alleviate these problems and help business in the town?
“The first thing we’ve done is to invite neighbouring parishes to discuss opportunities to do something on a joint basis to serve all of South West Holderness. So Preston, Paull, Thorngumbald and Burstwick parish councils have been invited to meet with Hedon to see if there is common ground.
“But we also want to involve as many residents as possible to feedback on their transport needs. It’s important we capture the needs of public transport users, and car users alike, both young and the old.”
The Hedon Town Council has asked for public opinions on a possible local transport scheme once before. That survey (June 2014) sought views on a proposal to run a small bus service around Hedon taking people into and out of the town centre shopping area. The service would have been funded partly through an increased council tax bill (precept) on local residents. However, of the small percentage of Hedon people (8%) who responded to the survey, the majority were against the proposal.
The indications from Councillor Gallant is that the new working group will have a far-wider remit than the transport group that met last year, and the research from its broader based consultation (i.e. resident feedback) will guide its deliberations. The likelihood of securing external funding for any new schemes will be a key factor.
The new working group will be conducting public survey work over the winter; based upon the findings and its own work, the group hopes to deliver a set of proposals on improving services to a meeting of the full Hedon Town Council sometime in the New Year.