Buses meet important social needs and are often an integral part of the local community – connecting people with jobs, healthcare, education, training, leisure and social networks.
Lack of transport can be a serious barrier to looking for work and accessing further education. 44% of workless households do not have access to a car or van compared with 22% of all households (Office of National Statistics, 2008).
Research we commissioned the Institute of Transport Studies to carry out shows:
- Over 50% of students over 16 are frequent bus users
- Over a third of 20-29 year olds are frequent bus users
- If they could no longer travel by bus to their places of education / training:
- 12% would have to miss sessions
- 6% would have to look for different and likely less suitable course
- Of those in work who depend on bus to access education or training all are in low paid low skilled occupations. Bus plays a vital role in enabling them to up-skill and enter “more productive jobs”
- 30% of those who are dependent on bus services to access their education and training courses live in areas in the top 10% of most deprived areas in Great Britain
Over two-thirds of Jobseekers Allowance claimants have no access to their own car or cannot drive (PTEG 2011, Total Transport).
Accessing healthcare is vital but 31% of people without a car have difficulty travelling to their local hospital, compared to 17% with a car (DEFRA: Sustainable Development Indictators in your pocket 2009).