Community bus service unveiled after receiving £60,000 in funding

Connect 5 / Community bus link / Dial-a-ride get a new mini bus, and get funding to refurbish the existing one.'L to R) Michelle Rayner, Pat Wallace, Paul Thorpe, Colin Poole, Cliff Baker, Ward Richards, Peter Taberner, Brian Saxton.'h5279c121
Connect 5 / Community bus link / Dial-a-ride get a new mini bus, and get funding to refurbish the existing one.'L to R) Michelle Rayner, Pat Wallace, Paul Thorpe, Colin Poole, Cliff Baker, Ward Richards, Peter Taberner, Brian Saxton.'h5279c121

A NEW £60,000 community bus service has been launched to give residents the opportunity to travel easily across five villages.

The Connect5 charity bus was unveiled on Monday after receiving vital funding to buy a brand new vehicle to provide locals with a door-to-door service, giving them easy access to doctors, supermarkets and childcare centres as well as group trips out.

The funding was provided by The Big Lottery Fund, the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Metro, Hemsworth Town Council and Ryhill, Havercroft and South Hiendley Parish Councils.

The money was also used to revamp a bus previously used in Havercroft, Ryhill and South Hiendley.

Michelle Rayner, centre manager of the Kinsley and Fitzwilliam Resource Centre, said a bus service previously funded by Wakefield Council and Hemsworth Town Council ended in 2009 due to finances. She said the centre had partnered up with the Havercroft service to apply for funding for a better scheme to cover all areas.

She said: “We are so happy the bus is up and running - it is perfect for those people who can’t get to the main bus routes, such as elderly or disabled residents, or single parents with a number of children. It is a great service to help those who otherwise would be isolated in their homes.”

A one-way trip costs £1 and residents must register with the service first. The service runs daily from 8am until 5pm. To register, call Brian Saxton on 07793 248787.