Press release: Partial reprieve for 505 bus route is welcome but nothing to gloat about

505-efgaurdian-2Partial reprieve for 505 bus route is welcome but nothing to gloat about

News that the 505 bus route from Chingford to Harlow has been granted a partial reprieve [1] is welcome but its reduced service will still cause problems for the elderly, disabled, students and carers, says Waltham Abbey’s Green Party coordinator.

With just six services a day many people will face being stranded or forced onto longer routes. Dave Plummer, Green Party candidate for Waltham Abbey South West, started a petition calling on the council to ensure the 505 is replaced with a service which is at least equal to the current one. The petition has raised nearly 500 signatures to date.

Dave said,

“While it’s good news that there will still be a 505 service after 9th May six buses a day is clearly inadequate. We need to keep the pressure on to ensure the full 505 service is maintained.”

Reacting to news that Waltham Abbey Conservatives are claiming credit [2] for keeping the vastly reduced service running, Dave said,

“My petition was specifically non-party political so it is particularly disappointing to see Waltham Abbey Conservatives trying to make political capital out of the 505, especially given their part in its reduced service.

The Coalition government’s cuts to local authority funding, equating to a 4.3% [3] cut in Epping Forest’s spending power for 2015 – 16, and Conservative led Epping Forest Council’s stubborn refusal to raise council tax [4] have both contributed to a drop in provision of essential services.

Not only are they claiming a reduced 505 service as something to be proud of, but they’re also failing to acknowledge that their own policies have led to the service being reduced at all.”


Notes for editors

[1] http://www.eppingforestguardian.co.uk/news/chingford/12875295._Life_line__bus_route_saved/
[2] http://www.wacg.info/news/goodbye-505-hello-new-505-bus-service
[3] http://www.guardian-series.co.uk/news/efnews/11678430.Threat_to_yet_more_services_as_councils_face_losing_millions_in_funding_cuts/?ref=rss
[4] http://www.eppingforestdc.gov.uk/news/2015/02/council-tax-frozen-for-fifth-year/