Changes to the bus timetable have reportedly caused issues for Rame Peninsula residents.  

Last year, Go Cornwall Bus made changes to a number of bus timetables including the 70B route which serviced the Rame Peninsula. 

Prior to the changes, the last bus of the evening which left Plymouth at 10.55pm to travel to Cremyll Edgcumbe Arms, passing through Millbrook, now terminates at HMS Raleigh in Torpoint. 

Many Cornish residents who live on the Rame Peninsula face ‘huge problems’ if they need to return home late from the city. 

The changes mean that any bus users who wish to travel home late from Plymouth to Millbrook have to get the 7.55pm bus to get home. 

Margaret Parker from the Rame Peninsula Public Transport Users Group, explains: “Millbrook is the largest village in Cornwall and not full of second home owners! 

“The last City Bus from Plymouth now leaves at 7.55 pm to the Rame Peninsula so some people who have to work late evening shifts or wish to attend performances at the Royal Theatre cannot get home to Cawsand, Kingsand and Millbrook. 

“With climate change currently headline news,s this decision means more cars driving and parking at Torpoint or in Plymouth. This impacts on the carbon imprint, congestion and pollution.” 

Margaret continued: “Elderly folk who no longer drive and young people who cannot afford a car face huge problems, let alone those of all ages with health and disability set backs who are not allowed to drive.” 

Over the past year, in the hope of influencing the new bus timetable which is due to be released in September, the Rame Peninsula Public Transport Users Group conducted a residents’ survey to create a snapshot of how the community felt about existing services, potential changes to those services and reaction to changes since 2022. 

The questionnaire was prepared and made available to the Rame community for use at a public meeting held on June 19. A total of 84 residents completed the questionnaire; 36 from Sheviock parish (Crafthole/Portwrinkle/Sheviock), 26 from Millbrook, 14 in Torpoint, seven from Kingsand/Whitsand Bay/Forder (but for analytical purposes were grouped with Millbrook responses), and one from Looe. 

The questions were graded on a one to five basis — one being the lowest and five being the highest. The reliability of the bus services was given a 2.7 out of 5 average rating, while the response of Cornwall Council/Go Cornwall Bus to comments since 2022 meeting was given a 2.5 average score. 

The ‘more forms of public transport should be included in the county wide timetables published’ question was given a 3.9 average, and ‘have bus service changes since April 2022 caused an increase in your car usage’ was given a 3.6 average. The feedback from the survey was then passed onto Plymouth City Bus and Cornwall Council. 

Kate Ewert, Labour councillor for the Rame Peninsula, has been campaigning since the changes to bring back the bus. 

“It’s a real blow to members of the community of Rame, Millbrook, Kingsand and Cawsand actually because it was our last bus back which meant you could go to the theatre for a start, now if you haven’t got your own vehicles it means you can’t, there a whole load of issues there, there’s a whole load of issues with accessibility but also about us trying to reduce our car use which can’t do if they are not running buses when people want them. The other issue which really concerns me is that there’s been a few residents who have had to give up their jobs because that bus was their bus coming home from work. They now can’t get home from work, if they can’t drive then that’s it they can’t work, and in this current crisis they have had to leave well paid jobs because they have no way of getting back to work.” 

Cllr Ewert has been working with the Public Transport Users Group to appeal for the bus over the past year however she says they have been told that there is no ‘demand for it’.   

She added: “While I accept it probably wasn’t a very heavily used bus, but for the people who used it, it was a real lifeline. 

“I would like to see that last service bus reinstated. I think it’s a real disservice to the people of the Rame Peninsula that it got cut.” 

The Cornish Times has contacted Go Cornwall Bus and Cornwall Council Transport for a comment.