9 out of 10 people say bus services have got worse in South Wales West in the last year
A survey by Plaid Cymru’s Sioned Williams, Member of the Senedd for South Wales West, has revealed that more than 90% respondents have a negative opinion of bus services in the region.
The survey, which ran between August and the end of November 2023 saw over two hundred responses, most of whom used buses on a regular basis and all of whom were from the region.
According to the survey 93% of respondents said they had a bad opinion of current bus timetables, 76% said they had a bad opinion on the variety of routes available, and 92% said that bus services have got worse over the last year.
There was some good news, with 92% of respondents saying that they felt safe on the bus either all or most of the time.
Ms Williams has previously raised concerns with the First Minister, who said he “wished” more people used the bus, but declining numbers and “competing priorities” meant that funds weren’t currently available.
Sioned Williams MS, Plaid Cymru Member of Senedd for South Wales West, said:
“The cuts to funding for bus services are leaving communities across Wales devastated – and it’s clear that people in my region have been badly affected. Constituents have previously told me that they’ve had to leave their jobs because of these cuts, and these survey results show that hundreds more have been impacted.
“Bus cuts are disastrous for many – particularly older people, vulnerable groups, poorer communities, and those who live in areas like the valley communities of my region who rely on the bus to get about.
“What’s worse is that once negative opinions have formed about buses – and my survey shows that this is already the case – and once people have found alternative ways of getting to where they need to be, the work to get people back on the bus becomes all that much harder.
“It’s so important that people have a genuine alternative to the car to get to where they need to be. Many people in my region don’t live near a train line, let alone a railway station, and don’t have access to a car, so this makes buses an essential service that must be protected.
“Welsh Government must take action to protect, prioritise and expand bus services, because the people for whom buses are an essential service demand it.”