were unable to progress the conference as planned but are still
exploring a revised event. There has been the small matter of a global
crisis, but Government objectives have also been revised following
on from the Climate Change Act. We now have DaSTS -Developing a Sustainable
We are looking for a new event organiser or sponsors and
will post more news soon.
planned for 2009 - possible topics to be covered include:
Session 1 - “Pushing ahead
or stuck in the sand?” with examples from urban and rural schemes
Session 2 - “Delivering
DRT” including PTEs, social
enterprise, and possibly Community Transport operators who have moved
into mainstream provision
Session 3 - panel on technology questions, with software
providers and users
Session 4 - “Way Forward” including
the potential for integrating public DRT with other services, covering
health and local authorities.
us know what you think!
the next steps - group decides to raise DRT's profile
discussed the results of the DfT meeting, members of the group met
in Manchester to discuss what course of action to take. Overall it
set up a database of surveys and reports on DRT, focussing on the
value in particular sectors such as employment, health and social
take a proactive role in publicising the value of DRT, using the data
explore the possibility for further meetings to
raise DRT up the transport agenda, both at officer and political level.
pursue the idea of conference in
late 2007 as part of this consciousness raising exercise.
- a social enterprise from Durham - also gave aninteresting presentation
on their attempt to set up an integrated travel hub for all DRT services
in the area.
more detailed note of the meeting can be found here.
presentation can be downloaded here.
group meets DfT to discuss key issues
next meeting in 2006 was in London with the Department for Transport.
It discussed a range of issues
- The future of DRT - what happens when Challenge Funds run
- What has been learned from the Challenge Fund schemes?
How can this be best used?
- Is there specific advice on funding DRT which should come
from central Government? Has the new concessionary fares scheme undermined
- Is there a need for integrated booking centres and how
can they be set up?
- Are there legislative barriers to the implementation of
DRT? If so, how can they be resolved?
here for a summary note of the meeting.
the agenda forward - DRT group meets to identify key issues
latest meeting in Sheffield discussed a range of issues which will
be carried forward into a dialogue with the DfT including:
scheduling and call centres - can they be made cost effective?
projects - is DRT on a roll or running out of steam?
operators - are they getting used to DRT or still charging a premium?
ventures - can social enterprise step in to control costs and widen
fares - will the new scheme have an adverse impact on a demand responsive
demand responsive information exchange/pressure group formed
a special meeting held in May this year at the Department for Transport
local authorities agreed to set up a new informal grouping to support
demand responsive transport. Membership is open to all those running
a DRT scheme. So far 30 local authorities and several operators have
agreed to participate and 26 attended the first meeting.
main objectives of the group are:
* to provide a focus for monitoring
and pressurising the private sector providers,
* to inform DfT about "issues on the ground", and
* to provide a conduit for the exchange of experience, information and
next step is to set up working groups to look at specific issues
and these will report back to the next full meeting in 2006. Keith
Buchan, Director of MTRU, is to chair the group for the first year.
working groups are:
scheduling, call centre options, internet booking;
costs including vehicles (cost, quality and reliability), rising
tender costs and funding generally
or regulation needed to remove or reduce anomalies having an adverse
impact on DRT
involvement and empowerment including social enterprise companies
- not just exchanging good practice at local level but raising
the profile of DRT nationally and regionally.
interested in joining the group and in particular one of the working
groups, please contact Keith Buchan through this website. We are
also looking for help in providing venues outside London.
the resources of this site will be available for members to write
brief descriptions of their schemes and key issues which they have
faced. This will help others to know who to contact if they want
to share experiences or are seeking help through good practice.
to this section
e-mail any contributions you would like to make: news, ideas, views
or responses to us. Either put them in an e-mail or attach them in
a simple file format such as a text (.txt) file. Images also welcome!
Regulations extend fuel subsidy to DRT
24th February 2004 demand responsive bus services in the UK have
been able to claim Bus Service Operators' Grant. However, the requirements
are strict and local Traffic Commissioners will have a role in their
of the reasons for this is the different national legislation covering:
which can be hailed in the street or booked;
hire cars (minicabs), which have to be booked without going through
the driver; and
Government wants to maintain this distinction without changing Acts
of Parliament. It also wants DRT buses to be eligible for bus operator
grant, but not taxis and hire cars. Hence the additional rules (for
example no booking DRT buses "with the driver and vehicle present").
It remains to be seen how this will be interpreted locally. For example,
at present it appears that if passengers buy a return ticket without
specifying the time they will be allowed to pick up the bus at a
fixed timing point just tell them they want to travel. This would
not be possible under current regulations for their outward journey.
The DfT's attitude is that everyone wants the system to work so some
means of sorting this out should be possible.
would therefore be very interested to hear from UK practitioners
as to how they and their local Traffic Commissioner are putting the
new regulations into practice. We wouild also like to hear from other
countries how far these distinctions exist and how national regulations
deal with any problems.
see the Department for Transport Press Release (html) click
see a summary of the changes (Word document) click
see the full guidance for operators (Word document) click
sponsored by the Department for Transport, was published in August
2004. It includes a large number of international and UK
examples and a wide ranging discussion of DRT, its role, costs and
go to the contents list (DfT site) click
the Executive Summary (pdf) click
the full report (pdf) click