Prime Minister David Cameron hears about Norwich’s SOS Bus

A Norwich SOS Bus volunteer got the chance to tell prime minister David Cameron about the project's work during a visit to Downing Street this week.

Lynsey Eagle visited Number 10 to talk to Mr Cameron and home secretary Theresa May about the role of the pioneering bus in helping women to get home safely.

The 27-year-old, from Mulbarton, said: 'Both the prime minister and the home secretary felt that the SOS Bus was a positive and valuable project.'

Miss Eagle took part in a discussion about what can be done to make journeys home safer for young women, arranged by Company magazine as part of its 12-year Get Home Safely campaign.

She said: 'I was very nervous but I feel privileged to have been - it's not everyone who can say they have been inside Downing Street.

'David Cameron asked me what the SOS Bus was and so I told him what the project offered, how it was not just a take-home service and how it helped to relieve pressure on other services, like hospitals.

'He was very positive about it.'

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Miss Eagle said Theresa May was already aware of the work of the SOS Bus and the discussion also touched on the impact of councils switching off street lighting, how women could use the new crime maps to help plan their routes home and if pubs and clubs could do more to help women get home safely.

The bus, which is based in Prince of Wales Road on Friday and Saturday nights, was first launched in Norwich in 2001.

Initially a six-month pilot, the pioneering scheme has been so successful that it has been rolled out to other towns and cities throughout the UK, including Blackburn, King's Lynn, Milton Keynes and Portsmouth. The bus may also star in a new fly-on-the-wall TV documentary. A crew from a production company has already made a pilot film.

Miss Eagle's visit to Downing Street will feature in the April edition of Company magazine, which goes on sale in mid-March.

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