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History of the Community Transport Scheme

The organisation has run minibuses under the Good Neighbours banner since 1977, initially with the help of a legacy from a local benefactor. Our vehicles are available for hire by community groups in our defined area of operation, ie, Ilkley, Addingham, Burley-in-Wharfedale and Menston. During 2000 the project handed back its second bus following the conclusion of a contract with the local authority. This left just one bus. The consequence of this was a significant fall in hire income in 2001.

In 2001, against a backdrop of falling bookings and an operating loss, the committee reviewed the project. It considered the increasingly stringent Health and Safety requirements, along with the time, cost and responsibility involved. However, a survey of user groups showed the evident value our passengers derived from the services. It was decided to appoint a paid co-ordinator to oversee minibus operations, to ensure Health & Safety standards were met, and to seek opportunities to expand the services provided. A new charging structure was also agreed.

Ian Padley started as co-ordinator for the project on April 1st 2002. Part of the cost of this post was met by a grant from the Countryside Agency. In return for this, the project was required to establish a weekly shoppers trip for the elderly and disabled in Addingham. In addition, the project took on the role of training and assessing drivers to the nationally recognised ‘MiDAS’ standard. This was beneficial from a ‘Health & Safety’ aspect and also helped attract new volunteers.

The last few years have seen significant growth in passenger numbers and journeys undertaken. After a successful fundraising campaign the project acquired an additional 11 seat ‘fully accessible’ bus and booking levels continue to increase.

The project was successfully floated off from Ilkley & District Council for Voluntary Service on November 1st 2004. It is now a ‘Company limited by guarantee’ and a charity in its own right. Its objective is to meet the needs of people isolated or disadvantaged through lack of access to normal public transport and to support the community through provision of services to the voluntary groups in the area.

The full name of the organisation is Ilkley & District Good Neighbours Community Transport, but it trades under the name Ilkley Community Transport.

'History of the Minibus and Community Transport' was written by Ian Padley (Community Transport Co-ordinator) and John Jewitt (Chairman)

Last Updated on Friday, 20 October 2017 13:53