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Saturday, July 20, 2024

Scottish Green MSP Calls for Reconsideration of Bus Service Cuts in Moray

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Ariane Burgess, Scottish Green MSP for the Highlands and Islands, has written to Stagecoach North Scotland, urging them to reconsider the proposed cuts to bus services in Moray, particularly Service 32.

In her letter, Ms Burgess highlighted the vital role of Service 32 in connecting Findhorn, the Park Ecovillage, and Kinloss to Forres, Elgin, Burghead, and Hopeman.

She also drew attention to the impact of the service cuts on those without cars, especially the elderly, young people, and the disabled, as well as the potential negative effects on the local tourism sector.

The MSP’s actions come in response to Stagecoach North Scotland’s recent announcement to cut bus services in Moray.

The decision coincides with the closure of Moray Car Share, due to spiralling insurance costs, which was used by approximately 300 people.

Ms Burgess’s letter also suggested that the bus service could see increased usage if it were linked to the train station timed to meet arriving and or departing trains.

She also pointed out the popularity of previous changes to the bus route making provision for it to run along the coast.

Ariane Burgess said:

“Service 32 is not just a bus route; it is a vital lifeline for our community.

“I urge Stagecoach to reconsider this decision and explore alternative solutions that will not leave our community without essential transport services.”

“Universal services like buses must be protected as an investment in Scotland’s people.

“That’s why the Scottish Greens expanded free bus travel to under 22s and made it possible for buses to be brought back into public ownership.

“Stagecoach made profits of £51.1m in just six months last year.

“They can well afford to continue these services and employ staff locally to maintain them.

“That they are choosing not to further underlines how urgent it is for bus services to be run to benefit people, not profit.”

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