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Gerald’s October Blog

Best wishes, to Gordon Woodward, who over the years has done so much for the village and especially the Church. Gordon broke his wrist two months ago, and being unable to look after himself, he has spent his time at Saint Wilfrid’s nursing home at Halton. I am sure you will join with me to wish him well, and hope to see him back in the village in the near future.

Arkholme resident Jim Hayton of Bainsbeck Farm is at the moment being cared for at Hornby Nursing home. Jim – who I think will qualify as the oldest resident to have been born and lived in the village all his life – is well respected in the farming community, and is well known for his interest in vintage tractors, and his ability in vintage ploughing matches. Best wishes Jim, hope to see you back home soon.

Another invalid is Margaret Blades of Keer Holme Farm. Margaret had a brain tumour removed in an operation at Preston Hospital ten weeks ago, and is making a very slow recovery, best wishes Margaret from your friends in village.

Photo updated 27 September (when the weather improved)

My apple tree has produced the best crop of fruit this year it has ever had. A lot of the fruit finished as windfalls after last weeks storm, and first the blackbirds came to eat them, and then when the sun returned this week a swarm of red admiral butterflies appeared, and what a beautiful colourful sight they are.

They only appear when the sun is shining so it is a mystery where they go when it rains.

Gerald Hodgson

Lune Bus Action Group

Duncan and I have circulated the email below to 14 local business together with 10 elected officials, including Local and County Councillors and our two MP’s, and our local media.  We have been delighted with the response we have received.  Lets hope that something can come of this.

“We have to accept that Lancashire are not going to consider evening and Sunday provision as they have said: “With the level of budget available it is proposed to retain a focus on Monday to Saturday daytime service provision and develop proposals to provide sustainable services that also prioritise employment, education and social needs”.

As far as evening and Sunday services are concerned the Service recommend as follows: “However the development of services at these times, when delivered in partnership with other stakeholders, such as local authorities or through the use of developer contributions, will continue to be considered, as they arise.”

At this time it is not clear what County will have in mind, but if we are to ever re-introduce, say the Friday and Saturday Evening services, which were so well supported by passengers visiting Kirkby and/or Lancaster, then clearly we will need to provide some evidence that the need is recognised by publicans, restaurateurs and businesses in and around Kirkby.

With that in mind we have decided to form an action group under the title Lune Bus Action Group.

We are writing to invite you to participate in this Group. We are not asking for financial support merely that you agree to accept communications, preferably by email, from us and when appropriate provide your views and suggestions.

We also invite you to involve any others who you believe will have a “stake” in the introduction of evening and/or Sunday services.

This Group will concentrate solely on obtaining Evening and Weekend service improvements. If anyone would like to be kept upto date regarding progress with the Monday to Saturday, daytime, schedules please let me know.

Best regards.

Duncan Foster & John Keegan
Lune Bus Action Group

Concessionary Fares for Carers

Lancaster Bus Users Group (BUGS) have received a request from a Chang.Org subscriber looking for support in connection with concessionary fares for Carers.  I am posting the email below in case anyone would like to air their views on this.  My personal feeling is that I am not in favour.  If support with transport is a need for a particular Carer then I think it should be an element in the Carers Allowance.  However, possibly I am being a bit curmudgeonly!  The message is as follows:

I have created a petition on change.org campaigning for free/concessionary travel for carers that I would appreciate you getting behind and showing your support.

I was a Carer from a Young Age to a family member who suffered a long fight with Early Onset Dementia from the age of 48, Epilepsy, Diabetes and many other conditions. I am also part of my local carers centre and have met many carers of all ages that all have had a huge impact on their lives from Caring. This is why I feel so strongly about this issue and have heard how much this simple change would help so many.

The proposal is that the government take the initiative to offer free/ concessionary transport for carers to allow them to better care. This could be possible either through adapting the concession and companion card which currently allows the carer to travel with the cared for but not separately which in most cases is needed or through some form of add on to carers allowance for those in receipt of it. Though preferably carers wouldn’t need to be in receipt of carers allowance as not every carer who could benefit from this travel are.

My petition has currently reached over 2200 signatures and is being backed by my local council’s petition board (Renfrewshire Council), in lobbying the Scottish Government to provide free/concessionary transport for unpaid carers.

Some other supporters of my petition include; Cosla, The coalition of carers, Carers UK, ME Association, Enable Scotland and many MSP’s.

Any support you show would be truly appreciated.

The link below directs you to my petition. I would truly appreciate your signature and if you could encourage others by sharing it on your social media pages.


Kind regards
Amanda Macdonald

John Keegan

The Village Blog