Wednesday, December 13, 2006

The wheels on the bus go round and round...

It is now less than five months until May 3rd, when all of Morley town Council get elected, along with two Leeds City Councillors for Morley North and South. In the mind of the local politician, it is time to get writing, so the local rag letters page is somewhat dominated by posturing, slagging off and counter-accusation.

One issue that occasionally emerges locally is the provision of something called yellow buses for schools, generally aimed at sorting out the congestion at the school gate topping or tailing the day. However, I'm not entirely certain what the point of that is. Yellow buses are an American phenomenon, where kids are bussed in to their school if they live more than a mile or so away. I've experienced yellow buses in Saudi Arabia- where I worked they were reserved for the Contractors whilst the regular staff travelled on Greyhound Coaches- the contrast is the number 213 into town ompared to the National express Coach to London.

However, in any transport system, it is based on a hub and spoke arrangement to where people want to come from (many places) to where they want to go (the common target, the city centre, or in our case, one of many schools). It needs multiple pick-up points and routes to get to the central destination within the desired window and possibly the best way is to live near to where you want to get anyway, or not rely on the taxpayer to fund it should you need to travel further afield.

School buses are nothing new- when I went to senior school I used to recall a number of double-deckers near the school gates, all with their rolling cloth signs turned to "scholars". My occasional visits to nearby High Schools in recent years show that there are a number of coaches at home time, routed to suit demand.

What is so special about painting them yellow? And why do the local Labour party keep banging on about it via the letters page according to some sort of rota? Maybe the current political control of Leeds did away with some school routes which is why the local party wants to make a meal of it. There is always a hidden agenda in local politics...

No comments: