SPT has allocated more than £1.3million to support a number of key community transport projects across Strathclyde.
Chair of SPT Operations Committee which approved the funding, Councillor David Wilson said: “Given the on-going COVID-19 global pandemic, the last year has had a severe impact on all transport operators, and this includes those working in community transport. However, it still remains that many of these community transport projects are lifelines services for those individuals and groups they support and help.
“Ensuring funding for their future operation and development is key to their success and will ensure they continue to deliver vital services in our urban and rural communities as we come out of lockdown restrictions.”
Community transport plays a key role in ensuring communities in many areas, where there is limited access to public transport, remain connected. It means groups who might otherwise have no way of travelling can improve their quality of life by reducing loneliness and increasing their social interaction helping to promote their own wellbeing.
Many of the projects funded ensure transport for those with special needs and kids’ clubs, community bus services for the elderly and for those with mobility issues who find it difficult to access public transport. They also provide transport for patients to meet hospital / hospice and out-patient appointments.
Grant funding of more than £530,000 has been awarded to Community Transport Glasgow (CTG) to support their core transport activities including special needs club transport, children’s Playscheme transport, as well as transport for the elderly and other vulnerable groups. This funding will help with all running costs and training for volunteers. Full funding for club and Playscheme transport is provided from Glasgow City Council to SPT which we arrange on behalf of a number of community transport operators
This includes funding of up to £95,000 to replace a minibus which runs the on the community bus service operating in Drumchapel between Antonine Road, Drumchapel Shopping Centre and Peel Glen Road filling a gap in the local bus network.
The North Area Transport Trust (NATA) has been awarded almost £229,000 to support their core transport activities and specific services including local bus services; special needs club transport and children’s Playscheme transport.
This funding also includes £95,000 to replace a vehicle on one of their key services operating between Glasgow City Centre and Sighthill. This service fills gaps in the local network and provides key interchange links to mainstream bus services.
£47,000 will help support club transport to more than 20 clubs in Glasgow for those with special needs, the elderly and other vulnerable groups.
More than £100,000 was awarded to South Ayrshire Community Transport (SACT) which provides accessible, affordable transport for socially or economically disadvantaged groups, voluntary groups and third sector organisations in South Ayrshire.
SACT also operate a MYBus Rural DRT service on behalf of SPT, more than £53,000 of the allocated funding will enable this service to continue operating during 2021/22.
More than £82,000 was awarded to Coalfield Community Transport (CCT), including £50,000 to support their core transport activities and an additional £32,291 to continue its Cumnock / Sorn Connector Demand Responsive Transport (DRT) service.
The Rural Development Trust has been awarded core funding of £40,000 to support their community transport activities for 2121/22. This will assist with running costs of vehicles and staff costs of the group’s transport and volunteer car scheme for health appointments.
Getting Better Together (GBT) has also been awarded £40,000 to support GBT’s core activities to provide accessible, affordable transport for socially or economically disadvantaged groups, voluntary groups and third sector organisations in North Lanarkshire.
SPT has also awarded more than £16,000 to West Dunbartonshire Council to restart a Community Transport Action Group (CTAG) in their area. Agreement has been reached previously to start this project which was unfortunately delayed due to the Covid pandemic. However as lockdown restrictions are lifted, it will now begin a Volunteer Car Scheme / demand responsive minibus service for those unable to use mainstream public transport for medical appointments at the new Clydebank Health Centre or other medical surgeries / hospitals.
Other groups receiving funding include Community Central Halls (CCH) which operates transport services within the most deprived communities of northwest Glasgow. CCH has been awarded £25,000 to continue to provide transport services for all ages, abilities and ethnicities in this area. In addition a further £7500 was also allocated for club and Playscheme transport providing transport for children attending activity clubs across Glasgow, bringing the total amount awarded to £32,500.
Glenboig Development Trust (GDT) has received £25,000 to provide transport services to a wide variety of groups such as nurseries, social work, children and youth groups, elderly and disabled. The Trust also operates shopping trips from villages in the Glenboig area of North Lanarkshire for local residents who have limited access to public transport.
Receiving funding for the first time is Ferguslie Park Housing Association (FPHA), the group partnering with Community Transport Glasgow has been awarded £10,000 to undertake activities to support the local community during the Covid pandemic. The FPHA activities aim to help reduce loneliness and social isolation within the community’s elderly population.
Total grant funding awarded to 17 projects:
• up to £530,261 to Community Transport Glasgow
• up to £228,944 North Area Transport Association
• up to £82,291 to Coalfields Community Transport
• up to £100,906 to South Ayrshire Community Transport
• up to £48,500 to the Rural Development Trust
• up to £40,000 to Getting Better Together
• up to £38,560 to South West Community Transport
• up to £32,500 to Community Central Halls
• up to £25,000 to Blantyre Volunteer Ltd
• up to £25,000 to Community Transport East Renfrewshire
• up to £25,000 to Glenboig Development Trust
• up to £48,151 to Larkhall & District Volunteer Group
• up to £8,000 to Renfrewshire Council
• up to £25,000 to Ardgowan Hospice
• up to £10,000 to Port Glasgow Voluntary Trans-Port Group
• up to £15,000 to East Kilbride Community Transport
• up to £16,020 to West Dunbartonshire Council
• up to £10,000 to Fergusalie Park Housing Association
Total funding allocated £1,309,133.
Photo credit: SPT