Birley Councillors Denise Fox, Karen McGowan and Bryan Lodge have expressed dismay over proposals for the future of bus services in the Base Green estate. Consultation is underway on the proposed Sheffield Bus Partnership and the future network to serve the city. Under these proposals, Service 44 that currently runs from the city centre to Crystal Peaks via Base Green and Birley, is facing big changes that will effectively cut off Base Green residents in the evenings. Buses will run in the day time only and will terminate at Birley, no longer providing a link to Crystal Peaks. It’s suggested that the tram will provide an adequate service in the evenings. “There is an aged population in Base Green and this bus provides a link to Crystal Peaks, Manor Top and the City Centre, especially in the evenings” says Cllr Denise Fox “The idea that elderly residents should use the tram in the evenings sounds good until you realise that it’s a steep uphill climb to the nearest tram stops”.
Many people have already contacted their local councillors as they fear it’s already agreed that the bus is to go. ” I’d hope that this can be looked at again by officers. On paper, I can understand the proposals look workable, but they don’t take account of the geography of the area and what it takes to get to the tram “said Cllr McGowan, adding “there is a fear that Base Green is becoming the forgotten estate. In recent years, the Post Office has gone and the Area Housing Office closed. On both occasions, residents were told that alternative provision was available a short bus journey away. Now we hear the bus service is to be reduced”
The bus also serves the Birley estate, again with a large number of elderly residents and there are fears that they too will face difficulties in the evenings as the alternative also involves a climb.
“I’ve been given a petition of over 900 signatures organised by the Base Green Tenants and Residents Association and they’ve asked that this be considered as part of the consultation ‘” commented Cllr Bryan Lodge “I’d like to invite the officers to visit the area with local councillors and walk the routes they are suggesting elderly residents take. I think they will be surprised at what they see”