‘Don’t leave us without our public transport lifeline’.
That was the clear message sent today to County Hall chiefs who are set to vote on planned cuts to subsidised bus services.
Lancashire County Council has been inundated with responses to its public consultation over its plans to save £3.8m over the next year.
Officers will now have to work their way through more than 1,300 replies before producing a report for councillors to vote on, which could yet see changes made to the controversial proposal.
Coun Vivien Taylor, who represents Wyreside, started a petition to protect services in Knott End and Preesall which attracted 1,176 signatures.
Another petition covering the Over Wyre area was signed by 472 people.
Coun Taylor called for council bosses to take heed of the comments and find a better solution. She said: “I think there is always a compromise to be had, provided there is still the opportunity to get people into employment and to medical facilities.
“You do look at some of the buses and at some times they don’t have many people.
“But some of the buses are very widely used in the evenings and that is what we must maintain.
“With the volume of responses it has received, surely the council has got to listen to the public?
“Having no service would be the death knell for us – jut leave us with something people can use.”
Residents of Over Wyre face having three key buses – the 2C, 86 and 89 – scaled back to run only during the daytime on weekdays and have said the changes will leave them isolated. The services connect Knott End with Blackpool, Fleetwood and Lancaster, covering a large portion of rural Wyre.
Coun Taylor added: “I am so pleased that so many people have taken the time to respond, especially when you consider that this is such a phenomenally important lifeline to the residents over here.
“When jobs are in jeopardy from people being unable to get to and from work, there is a huge social impact. Cutting the services would deny people their independence.”
A spokesman for Lancashire County Council said: “A report is being produced that collates the responses and that will go to the cabinet.”
If approved, the plans, along with any proposed changes, will then go to a full council meeting on February 20 for a vote.