After two years, Stirling Council produced a proposal in July to address complaints regarding the Cambusbarron detour on the Aberfoyle C11 daytime and Balfron C12 evening bus routes. This proposal
returned both C11/C12 buses to their original routes and provided links to Forth Valley College and Stirling Community Hospital. The proposal was overwhelmingly accepted by commuters at a Consultation in Aberfoyle on 17th July. Despite losing no services, on 18th July Cambusbarron rejected it. As a result, it was deferred.
As this diversion was added to both routes with no prior consultation we found it incredible that this one village, so near to Stirling, could override the views of the majority. Buchlyvie Community Council wrote a letter, supported by 5 other Community Councils across wards 1and 2, asking for the immediate implementation of the new proposal to relieve pressure on our dwindling C11/C12 routes. Local Councillors, from both wards, pledged their support and met with transport officers. A formal complaint was lodged with Stirling Council. Officers have since decided it is best to separate the two communities. Initially they proposed to restore the C11 but not our C12, despite us arguing that both services be changed simultaneously. To make a change that would suit Cambusbarron would have required extra funding. Officers have now been told to develop a plan to change the C11 without incurring extra costs. They are trying to achieve this as we go to print. We have received conflicting reports on a decision re the C12. A total of 15 plus Communities are adversely affected by the Cambusbarron detour.
This situation has meant the campaign for Sunday Transport has been somewhat neglected. However, all local Councillors and Community Councils have been asked to continue to pursue this. Below are some of the issues that people without transport struggle with on a Sunday.
Connecting to and from trains/buses in Stirling and Glasgow
Hospital appointments or visiting
Accessing other villages on this route
Visiting relatives in Care Homes
Attending different Churches/Church events
Young people cannot stay overnight on a Saturday with friends unless parents ferry to and fro. They also cannot access Stirling independently to shop or socialise.
Villagers cannot go to pubs or attend events like beer festivals in different villages without having to drive.
No access to Christmas Lights celebrations in Stirling, always held on a Sunday.
With regard to the upgrade of the 8 Balfron Buses highlighted by Bruce Crawford, it appears only one has reached Balfron to date. The seats have been reupholstered with new fabric. However, like the Butchers Boy in the Stirling Observer, you do have to look out for it. We look forward to the remaining 7 arriving at Balfron …preferably water tight and with a fully working heating system going into the winter months.