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Archive for the ‘Better Buses News’ Category

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Limmy's bus trip to Yoker

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

Limmy loves the buses too – here a classic adventure to the mythical Yoker is shortlived.  ‘It wasn’t like this in the old corporation days’


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Rab C Nesbit revealed as bus campaigner

Sunday, April 22nd, 2012

A contributer to the ‘have your say’ section has raised our attention to that fact that Rab C Nesbit is a longtime bus traveller and campaigner. ‘Campaigner’ might be too strong a word, but he took the opportunity, during hostage negociations for Richard E. Grant (Minister for Work) to to ask for an improved 34 bus service between Govan and castlemilk as the present one was ‘gantin’  

Our contributer  assures us that the service remains unreliable and irregular despite Rab’s efforts.

For old times’ sake. Here is the episode if you want to watch it




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Patrick asks MSPs to listen to the passengers

Thursday, April 19th, 2012

In a debate in the Scottish Parliament on 19 April, Patrick Harvie called for passenger views to be heard.


During the debate on bus services, an amendment by Patrick was debated that asked for more power to passengers. Patrick read out many of the views posted to the website in support of his argument that the buses are not fit for purpose.

You can watch the debate here: Patrick’s opening speech is at 31min30

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Bus debate in Parliament

Thursday, April 19th, 2012

Here is the press release that Patrick put out following the bus debate.



Speaking in today’s debate in the Scottish Parliament on buses, Green MSP Patrick Harvie accused the government and other opposition parties of failing to listen to passengers.


Mr Harvie used his tablet device to show MSPs in the chamber his Better Buses website which is gathering hundreds of comments from bus users.


The on-line Better Buses survey reveals 62% of bus users are unsatisfied with bus services, 86% say buses are not value for money and 71% say buses are unreliable.


92% do not feel that their opinion counts when changes are made to bus services.


Mr Harvie said: “SNP, Labour and the Libdems ave failed to properly fund bus services and regulate them. In opposition they call for action but when in government they fail to deliver.


“For a family to get from one side of Glasgow to the other it can be cheaper going by taxi. Surely situations like that should shock us into action?


“It’s also shocking there is still no statutory body protecting the interests of bus passengers. Given the lack of action from ministers I would encourage bus users to continue contributing to the Better Buses website so their voice get louder.”


The Better Buses website is and the Twitter account is @betterbuses.



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Parliament to debate buses

Tuesday, April 17th, 2012

This morning (Thursday) there will be a debate in the Scottish Parliament about buses.


Patrick’s amendment calls for more of a voice for bus users in deciding and designing bus services, and calls on the government to provide adequate funding for bus servies and to bring forward legislation to regulate bus services. The motion also calls for Passenger Focus,  the statutory body that represents all train passengers and bus users in England, to represent Scottish bus users.

The full wording of the amendment is below. More news to follow after the debate.

Motion S4M-02639.4: Patrick Harvie, Glasgow, Scottish Green Party, Date Lodged: 18/04/2012


As an amendment to motion S4M-02639 in the name of Elaine Murray (Transport), leave out from second “notes” to end and insert “believes that successive Scottish administrations have failed both to provide the level of financial support necessary to maintain high quality and affordable bus transport in all communities and to adequately regulate the industry to ensure value for taxpayers’ money; recognises that bus fares in many parts of Scotland are now less affordable than train fares and even taxis in some circumstances; considers that fuel prices are likely to continue to rise and that this will create a greater need for high quality and affordable public transport as an alternative to private car use; notes the lack of any statutory body protecting the interests of bus passengers; believes that bus users’ voices are not being adequately heard in the debate on bus transport; encourages bus passengers to publish their views through the website; calls on the Scottish Government to reverse the cut in the Bus Service Operators Grant, ensure that overall public spending on bus services is adequate to protect services, jobs and fares and extend the remit of Passenger Focus in Scotland to bus users, and believes that new legislation is required to enable the regulation of bus services in Scotland to ensure sustainable and reliable bus services throughout the country.”


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Better Buses on BBC

Monday, April 16th, 2012

Patrick was interviewed as part of an item on the Sunday Politics Show on 15th April.  See a clip from the programme here where Patrick emphasises the importance of bus users gaining a greater voice.  The full debate can be seen on iplayer – the chat starts around 33 minutes into the programme.

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Sneak preview of the survey results

Friday, April 13th, 2012

There has been a great response to our calls for bus users to give us their views. One of the ways we are seeking views is through a questionnaire that is on line and which we are also delivering face to face at bus stops around Glasgow. If you haven’t completed it yet, you can do so here.

I thought you would like a sneak preview of the results we are getting from the online survey.

Over half of you (59%) are dissatisfied with the service you receive from the buses with only 10% satisfied. The rest aren’t convinced either way.

The issue that is most troubling is the price of tickets with 84% of online respondents disagreeing that buses are value for money. That is not surprising given the price hikes of recent years and the most recent one at the end of March. Reliability of buses was the next gripe, with frequency and lack of information following close behind. More than half of people responding to the survey said that drivers are ‘not often’ or ‘never’ helpful

This preview of the data was done from the 105 surveys that are already in, we will be doing a detailed analysis of the responses towards the end of April so get your responses in and tell your friends.

Alongside the survey we are also gathering views that are forming our ‘Big Plan’ for the buses. We will now add additional asks into this part of the website, using your words and your priorities. We want to produce a plan that comes, not from Patrick Harvie MSP, but from you, the bus users.

Continue the conversation here.

Fill in the survey here

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Call for views as Patrick meets FirstBus chief

Thursday, April 12th, 2012

On Monday Patrick will be meeting with Ronnie Park, FirstBus Managing Director in Glasgow.


He will be taking views submitted to the webiste and via twitter so far and is looking for any further messages that bus users would like to give to First.


How will the planned changes to First’s services affect you?


How do you feel about the recent price rises on First buses?


Are your buses on-time, frequent and do they take you where you want to go?


We have already downloaded over 250 comments from the website, twitter and from the online survey. If you haven’t had your say yet, now’s your chance and Patrick will take your views to FirstBuses and get answers.

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Latest on FirstGlasgow’s reduction in services.

Thursday, April 12th, 2012

First Glasgow has updated their plans for service cuts on their website. The original letter was received by Patrick Harvie from the company in Late February and posted on his website.

The most recent update posted on the FirstGlasgow website has some additional changes, not mentioned in the February letter.

These changes may not have been given the statutory 56 days notice to the public.

 The changes are:

Alterations to previous list:

  • service 17: Townhead and Coatbridge, and 213A:Bargeddie, Cranhill and Glasgow will now be withdrawn as of 28 April, rather than 7 May,
  • a revised timetable will operate on the 120: East Kilbride and South Lanarkshire College.
  • service 36 (Glasgow and Chryston/Cumbernauld) will have a revised timetable, however the previous assurance of no change in frequency has been removed.

Services affected that were not on original letter:

  • Service 88: Glasgow and Kirkintilloch will have a slightly revised timetable
  • Services 207 and 209: Motherwell, Hamilton and Bellshill circular will be withdrawn
  • Service 240: Overtown or Pather and Glasgow slight revisions on weekdays

 The changes result in 10 services being fully or partially withdrawn and 12 services with reduced frequency

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Passenger Survey Reveals Top Concerns

Thursday, April 12th, 2012

A preliminary look at the data from our survey of bus users in Glasgow reveals more than 90 per cent don’t feel involved when changes are made to their service.

This finding comes just as First Group hiked fares last week by a massive 50 per cent for child all day tickets and 28 per cent for singles. Later this month a severe reduction in services will cut off many neighbourhoods in the city.

Patrick said ‘The initial results back up what many constituents have said in recent months – there is no attempt to consult them before services are cut or fares are jacked up. Private operators have a track record of behaving like the buses are their personal enterprise when in fact they are a vital public service.  I have already had more than 100 bus users complete the online survey and I look forward to receiving more comments via the website and on Twitter so I can help the bus users of Glasgow build a case for better regulation, better services and better prices.’

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