England’s National Parks are being clogged up with cars because of “severe” cuts to rural bus services, a new report warns today.
More than nine out 10 families have to travel to the parks by cars because of poor bus services, says the study, National Parks for all: making car-free travel easier.
In Exmoor National Park, for example, a return journey between Exeter and Dulverton, a distance of 29 miles, costs £22 and two changes of bus each way.
Responding to the report, Claire Haigh, Chief Executive of Greener Journeys, said:
“This report highlights the damaging effects of sustained cuts to rural bus services. Buses are the lifeblood of communities, helping people – especially those on low incomes – to connect to work, family and friends. Some 3.5 million people in the UK travel to work by bus, and these commuters generate more than £64 billion worth of goods and services per year.
“Recent research by Greener Journeys showed that a 10% improvement in local bus services is linked to a 3.6% reduction in social deprivation across England, taking into account employment, income, life expectancy and skills. We urge the Government to consider these findings when contemplating future investment in bus services.”
Notes to Editors:
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About Greener Journeys: Greener Journeys is a campaign dedicated to encouraging people to make more sustainable travel choices. It is a coalition of the UK’s leading public transport organizations, user groups and supporters. It aims to reduce CO2 emissions from transport by encouraging people to switch some of their car journeys to bus or coach instead. Switching from car to bus for just one journey a month would mean one billion fewer car journeys on our roads and would save 2 million tonnes of CO2 every year. For more information visit www.greenerjourneys.com