Old folk plead to save ‘lifeline’ bus

Elderly residents of Callow Mount, Gleadless will be the latest to suffer from Sheffield Council cutbacks when their twice-weekly shopping bus will be scrapped
Elderly residents of Callow Mount, Gleadless will be the latest to suffer from Sheffield Council cutbacks when their twice-weekly shopping bus will be scrapped

ELDERLY people are urging Sheffield Council to have a change of heart and keep their ‘lifeline’ minibus service on the road.

Residents of Handbank tower, Callow Mount, Gleadless Valley, can use the transport service on Tuesdays and Fridays.

However, it is among community services being axed at the end of March as part of £55 million of budget cuts.

Grandmother Audrey Seddon, aged 85, said: “Tuesdays are the busiest day when more than a dozen people use the bus to go shopping.

“If they just axed the Friday, but kept the minibus for one day, it would make a big difference for us.

“Some of the people who use it are quite elderly - one is 99, another 95, and the majority of us are over 80. Without it we just wouldn’t get out.

“The bus is convenient and takes wheelchairs, so people with mobility problems can go out.”

Audrey said she would be reduced to buying her groceries online if the bus was axed, because she does not have any relatives in Sheffield who can take her shopping.

But she regards herself as fortunate because other residents do not use the internet.

She said: “Not everyone can rely on families to help - what about those people who can’t use the internet.”

Coun Mick Rooney, council cabinet member for communities, said: “In the communities department, we have had to make £20.3 million of savings for the coming year.

“This is what the Government’s deficit reduction policy looks like in action.”

The council said it would not be reconsidering the decision to axe the community bus services.

n Residents affected, including those at Callow Mount, can request to use Sheffield Community Transport’s Door 2 Door service by calling 0114 285 9906.