- Posted by: Joyce Watson MS
- Category: Feature
Assembly member Joyce Watson recently met representatives of a residents’ group that is campaigning for better bus services in rural Gwynedd.
Mawddach Bus Users in Meirionnydd say cuts to bus services have left people unable to get to work, college or hospital – leaving many people stuck at home and isolated.
A petition signed by 174 people calling on the Welsh Government to pay for more services was delivered to the Assembly’s Petitions committee in April.
Committee member, Joyce Watson met campaigners Liz Rowley, Anne Tingey, Barbara Snowball, Louise Hughes and Debbie Ashton at Barmouth library on Friday (14 June). She listen to their concerns and updated them on the progress of the petition.
Speaking after the meeting, Mrs Watson said:
“I was very pleased to talk with the group. Gwynedd council is currently reviewing transport services in the county, which is good news. Transport links are crucial to people’s well-being and quality of life, especially in rural areas like south Meirionnydd. Barbara and the group explained to me that the absence of x-ray facilities in Tywyn hospital, for example, means most people go to Dolgellau, which can be arduous and time-consuming going by public transport. That is the sort of issue the health board and the council must consider when designing both health and transport services.”
The Mid and West member presented feedback from her visit to the Assembly Petitions committee at its meeting on Tuesday (18 June). The group said it would raise Mawddach Bus Users’ concerns with several outside agencies – it agreed to write to the Children’s and Older People’s Commissioners for Wales, Age Cymru and Disability Wales.
In a letter to the petitions committee dated 21 May 2013, Transport Minister Edwina Hart states that she has asked north Wales transport groups Taith and TraCC to prepare new bus strategies which ensure good access to key education, training, employment, health and shopping facilities.