In my last Newsletter I talked about the introduction of our new bus. Well it has been over a year now since we brought it into service so apologies for very tardy newsletter writing!
We had a few teething problems with the new bus and most of them have been ironed out although many passengers still struggle with the stiff and awkward seat belts. Recently we visited a seat belt manufacturing business near Amersham to find out if ours could be improved, to be told that the only way would be to replace all the seats; not an attractive proposition. So I am afraid we are stuck with what we have and I do hope that you find our drivers are helpful when assistance with strapping in is needed. Otherwise, the bus is running well and is happily passing all of its various safety checks.
During nearly seven years of running our scheduled services we have changed our routes very little. Recently however, we have seen one or two routes where passenger numbers have declined and others where they have increased. And there are housing developments in the offing that will require us to consider changes. This has prompted us to review our routes and we may be looking at some minor changes later this year followed by others in a longer timescale as housing developments occur. We will, of course, give plenty of notice of any changes and they will be evolutionary rather than revolutionary.
At the same time, we have been developing a marketing strategy designed primarily to attract younger folk into using our bus. Already, possibly because we have made travel for 16s and under free, we have seen lots of children on the bus during the Easter holidays and we hope that trend will continue.
Our volunteer drivers do a fantastic job in keeping our scheduled services running but a few will be retiring this year and the next, and without replacements we could start to feel the strain. I am pleased to report, however, that five people have come forward to offer their services and we will be organising a training session for them in the near future. So look out for new faces in the driving seat and do not be shy in letting them know if they get anything wrong!
Finally, I’m delighted to report that we have been nominated for a Citizens Award by Risborough Town Council in recognition of our service to the community. We were presented with the award on 20th April in the Community Centre and many of our volunteer drivers were there to take the plaudits they so richly deserve. Thanks are of course also due to you the passengers for all for your support to the bus and especially for the kind donations you make towards our running costs. The News section of our website at www.racb.co.uk has all the details of the award along with lots more information, so do please visit the site.
The newsletter is also available to download.
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