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MP launches petition over Old Catton bus service changes

Chloe Smith MP with the bus petition and residents in Old Catton.  Photo: Bill Smith

Chloe Smith MP with the bus petition and residents in Old Catton. Photo: Bill Smith

Archant © 2012

A Norwich MP has launched a petition calling for bus route changes to be reconsidered, saying that for many constituents the services are “a lifeline”.

Chloe Smith, MP for Norwich North, wants First buses to rethink its recent axing of the number 10 and 10A through Old Catton.

She unveiled a public petition to show the strength of public feeling yesterday at the Maid’s Head pub on Spixworth Road, one of the main routes left without a bus service since the changes.

She was joined by Norfolk county councillor Judy Leggett and members of Old Catton Parish Council, who have arranged a public meeting with representatives from First on November 1.

Miss Smith said she had been approached by many residents concerned at the recent Norwich-wide revamp of bus routes and timetables. They included a 91-year-old resident who is unable to walk up the hill to the new stop, and has been left effectively housebound by the changes.

“In Old Catton, many elderly residents are dependent on the bus service and I call on First Buses to reconsider their recent decisions for the good of the community,” she said.

“Please sign this petition to show your strength of feeling, and I will help make your voice heard.

She added: “I have always taken up Norwich North bus problems over the years.

“I have found First Buses a reasonable company to deal with, but they need to know that in some places their buses are a lifeline.”

Many elderly people, or those with limited mobility, used the bus services to get into the city, do their shopping or attend medical appointments.

First renumbered the 10/10A service at the end of September, leaving Old Catton with no buses running along Spixworth Road.

The service had run along Spixworth Road from George Hill to Spixworth, but now all journeys operate along the North Walsham Road.

A public meeting will be held at Old Catton Village Hall at 7.30pm on November 1.

The petition is available online at www.ipetitions.com/petition/chloe-smith-mps -route-to-suit-bus-petition/

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