Villagers disappointed after plea for bus service rejected
RESIDENTS of a Derbyshire village say they are "very disappointed" after being told that bus routes will not be altered to include their community.
Hundreds of homes have been built in Codnor Park – many over the past 15 years – with even more on the way.
But the only bus operating in the village is a school service.
This has left residents facing a walk half a mile outside the village to access services in Ironville.
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Members of Codnor Park Action Group handed in a petition containing almost 500 signatures to Derbyshire County Council.
But the Tory-led authority has disagreed that one is needed.
In a report, the council's strategic director of environmental services, Ian Stephenson, argued the half mile walking distance outside of Codnor Park fell "well within the walking distances faced by many residents in Derbyshire and beyond".
But Andy Cadman, of the action group, insisted it was not a "reasonable" walking distance for those living in parts of the village furthest away from Ironville.
He said: "This is all relative and relates to terrain, physical abilities and where you live in the village. For example some people find it relatively easy to reach the bus stop but struggle on the way back carrying shopping and taking a more uphill route.
"Naturally we are very disappointed. The planners allowed a large development and expansion to take place in Codnor Park, without putting in the necessary infrastructure. Our community lacks many essential local services, especially a bus service.
"If the roads are not suitable for buses, why have the planners allowed so many new houses to be built and currently have plans to build even more?"
Under the terms of the 1985 Transport Act, the council is obliged to provide "necessary" bus services which are not delivered by commercial operators. About 85% of Derbyshire's bus network is run commercially.
Two bus services operate from the Ironville bus stop – a Kirkby to Ripley service and a Alfreton to Nottingham route, both of which are run by Trent Barton.
Trent Barton has told the county council it would like to serve Codnor Park directly but cannot do so as roads in the village are "unsuitable" for its buses.
Mr Stephenson said that, all things considered, it was "not viable" for the council to provide a bus service into Codnor Park.
He added that residents could make use of Amber Valley Community Transport's door-to-door service to Alfreton every Friday. And he said people needing to get to hospital could call upon the Community Car Scheme.