On the buses or not on the buses? That is the question.
I think Doncaster people are becoming more and more frustrated with the present bus services.
It seems to me that retailers, market traders, pubs and so on are suffering from a lack of good public transport in most areas of Doncaster.
In Edenthorpe there is only the 87 which stops at the main stop, Clovelly Road.
This results in overcrowding on the 87 while the X8 limited stop service goes by half empty.
Services after 6pm are extremely poor for people coming in to see shows, have a meal or do anything else in the town centre.
Many people do not want to bring their cars into the middle of town at night – so they can enjoy themselves and have a drink.
On a Friday morning recently, a crowd of shoppers waited more than 25 minutes for an 87 bus.
When it finally arrived, the lady driver said she had only just come on duty and did not know where the other buses were.
On board, there were elderly people, who shop for fresh food on Doncaster Market, laden with bags of heavy shopping; ladies with push chairs and small children; and disabled people having to stand.
Some weeks ago I left home at 5.50pm to walk to the bus stop on the Main Road in Edenthorpe.
I saw a steam of buses go by saying ‘Not in Service’ and eventually at around 6.30pm had to phone for a taxi, which arrived within three minutes, but at a cost of £5.30.
I had no alternative as I had theatre tickets for a show starting at 7pm.
This made a very expensive night out.
I attended many meetings with regard to the new performance venue prior to it being built and we were all assured that there would be a bus service from the Interchange to the Cast and Waterdale area.
This has never happened as far as I am aware.
The alternative is to walk through the Waterdale Centre, which is probably all right on a summer night, but not so good on dark nights when there are gangs on skate boards, hanging around the area, which can be somewhat threatening.
There are various areas of the town that only have a bus service every hour after 6pm and some of these buses do not even turn up.
If we want events to be well attended in an evening in town, this has to be seriously looked at.
I would suggest the people in charge of public transport and the bus companies talk to people in Doncaster to find out what is required, not just plan from an office in Rotherham or Sheffield.