‘Our buses are not just for elderly’

FOR ALL: John Phillips.
FOR ALL: John Phillips.

The founder of a community transport group is looking to dispel the notion that the service is only for the elderly.

John Phillips set up Go START, which operates community buses in the Sudbury area, three years ago.

He says he wants organisations and residents to know that the service is available to a wide range of people.

“We have worked hard to get away from the perception that community transport is just for the elderly as it is so much more than that,” said Mr Phillips.

“We are certain there are many other groups who would benefit from using our service but do not realise we are available to them.

“I would just like to urge any local, non-commercial organisations in the area who believe they may benefit from having access to transport to contact us so we can discuss possibilities.”

The group’s buses are available to all those who do not have access to other forms of transport.

Since its launch, the service has expanded significantly to help youth clubs, schoolchildren, people with disabilities and the elderly.

“Our growth over the last three years has been remarkable,” said Mr Phillips.

“We now have a fleet of five vehicles and 15 volunteer drivers supporting a diverse range of people and organisations within the community.”

Among the organisations the service helps are the Sudbury Gateway Club and Age UK.

It also ferries children between upper schools in Sudbury and Great Cornard, provides vehicles which are accessible to wheelchair users and makes more than 250 passenger journeys with its dial-a-ride service.

“Many of those who use our services would be left isolated and lonely without us,” added Mr Phillips.

For more information, go to www.gostart.org.uk.