Transport hub and bus routes planned

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A NEW transport hub and more bus routes have been promised thanks to £4m in Government funding.

Rutland County Council found out on Wednesday that it had secured the cash after an initial bid was turned down earlier this year.

The money will be used to implement its Travel4Rutland project.

There will be a sustainable transport interchange being created at Oakham railway station to include cycle hire, bus stops and possibly a new car park.

Bus routes will be introduced to link Rutland Water with Oakham and Uppingham. There will also be an employment shuttle bus.

Council leader Roger Begy (Con) said: “This is absolutely fantastic news for Rutland and I’d like to congratulate everybody involved in putting this bid together. Public transport is always a challenge in rural areas such as Rutland, but this funding will enable us to do lots of things that will make a real difference to the day-to-day lives of local people.”

The employment shuttle bus will connect Melton, Oakham, Stamford, Uppingham and Corby to the major employment areas of Rutland. The bus routes will include stops in villages that straddle the direct route. The aim is to allow people to work shifts in areas currently lacking in transport links.

A new seven-day hourly tourism bus will operate on a circular route linking Oakham, Uppingham and Rutland Water.

Deputy leader Terry King (Con) said: “The impact of this project on the town centres should not be underestimated. Rutland Water is one of the major tourist attractions in the East Midlands and we’re keen to promote both Oakham and Uppingham to visitors. In addition, the employment bus included in the bid will make it easier for workers to get to major employers in the local area”.

Rutland MP Alan Duncan said: “I am delighted the council has managed to secure such a large sum. It is a testament to the quality of their proposals and I know the funding will provide valuable additions to transport in the county.”

The council will now put together detailed plans and discuss with the Department for Transport.