While it does not directly impact Bude (yet), Cornwall Council’s plans to phase out some buses on routes deemed fit for walking, will cause problems for some families in other areas, such as South Petherwin.

Cornwall Council says it is ‘now encouraging active travel and investing in walking and cycling infrastructure and making our roads safer for pedestrians and cyclists. We hope and expect this will result in a reduction in routes currently considered unsuitable for walking”.

What is actually cost cutting is being mooted as good for children as it makes them more active.

A recent review has identified 16 routes which have previously been assessed as suitable to walk, but for which we are continuing to provide travel assistance – at a total cost of between £50,000 and £60,000 per year.

Cornwall Council

Routes under review are:

Routes under review:

Routes to Primary Schools
Hatt to Landulph SchoolMinorca Lane to Bugle School
Joan Moffat Close to Liskeard Hillfort SchoolPorthtowan to Mount Hawke Academy
Routes to Secondary Schools
Tregadillet to Launceston CollegeFoxhole to Brannel School (St Stephen)
South Petherwin to Launceston CollegePenwithick to Poltair School (St Austell)
Prince Phillip Estate to Launceston CollegeBurlawn to Wadebridge School
St Cleer to Liskeard School and Community CollegeCury to Mullion School
Lamellion to Liskeard School and Community CollegeTruthwall to Cape Cornwall School (St Just)
Dobwalls to Liskeard School and Community CollegeDelabole to Sir James Smith’s School (Camelford)

Of course, routes which may seem walkable in spring and summer can often rapidly become dangerous to walk in autumn and winter.

The Council says:

This could mean more opportunities for children to walk or cycle to and from school and the associated health benefits that brings. However, it is important to remember that it is the responsibility of parents/carers to ensure that their child travels safely to and from school if they do not qualify for travel assistance. That means it is ultimately the parents/carers who decide how the journey to and from school should be undertaken, including whether walking or cycling would be appropriate.

Always interesting how cuts become ‘opportunities’ in council-speak.

If pedestrian route assessments are completed to the Council’s satisfaction, then this would mean:

  • we would no longer agree new applications for travel assistance (on the grounds of an unsuitable walking route) for the Academic year 2024-25 onwards.
  • Children who have already been offered transport assistance will continue to receive this.

If it impacts you or your family, the survey is here. It has to be completed by October 1st.