The future of Wensleydale Flyer bus service 856 has been secured for the next six months, thanks to local donations and contributions from the Locality Fund by six local North Yorkshire county councillors.
The service runs every Sunday between Northallerton, Bedale, Leyburn and Hawes, and has been supported for the last year by TransPennine Express.
Following an appeal by local bus users to North Yorkshire County Council's Richmondshire Area Constituency Committee Northallerton councillor Caroline Dickinson said she and five other members who lived along the bus route had noted how valued the service was and had agreed DalesBus should be given time to find a funding solution.
The councillors (David Blades (Romanby and Broomfield); Caroline Dickinson (Northallerton); Yvonne Peacock (Upper Dales);
Karin Sedgewick (Middle Dales); John Weighell OBE (Bedale) and Annabel Wilkinson (Swale)) will provide £500 from each of their Locality Budgets in the hope that further funding for the service can be found to enable the service to continue beyond Easter.
D&BCIC are seeking a new sponsor for the service from April 2021 onwards, and would like to hear from any businesses who might be interested in helping to support this valuable community service. We can be contacted by email here.
Dales and Bowland Community Interest Company is currently looking for people with Marketing or Fundraising knowledge, skills and expertise to help deliver our ambitious Business Plan for 2021-23 and to put the DalesBus network on a more sustainable path.
Dales and Bowland Community Interest Company (D&BCIC) was formed in 2007 as a volunteer-run, not-for-profit social enterprise to manage the “DalesBus” network of weekend public bus services into and around the Yorkshire Dales National Park and Nidderdale/ Forest of Bowland Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It is wholly owned by Friends of the Dales, a registered charity.
D&BCIC is managed by a voluntary Board of Directors which includes members with experience in finance and accountancy, bus operations, administration, transport economics, plus former chairs of the Yorkshire Dales Society and Friends of DalesBus. Directors are involved with the day to day activities of managing of the DalesBus network and are assisted by a wider pool of volunteers who help with things like distribution of publicity materials and updating of bus stop displays.
The Board generally meets at least three times per year and reviews detailed information on operations, patronage, finance, and marketing. On the basis of this information it approves plans for services and marketing activity.
DalesBus serves a wide range of catchment communities across the North of England, including the urban areas of West Yorkshire, East Lancashire, and Teesside. The network has expanded over the years and now supports fifteen summer services linking all the surrounding urban areas to the Dales, with services to Malham, Upper Wharfedale, Wensleydale, Swaledale and Nidderdale. These include services scheduled to connect with other bus and train services, in particular on the Leeds - Settle - Carlisle line. In winter months five services run, serving Upper Wharfedale and Wensleydale.
DalesBus also provides a much-valued service for local communities within the Dales who otherwise would have no transport on Saturdays, Sundays, and Bank Holidays, thereby further isolating those without access to their own transport. Over 30,000 passenger journeys were made on services managed by D&BCIC in 2019-20.
Skills or experience required
Currently D&BCIC uses a range of channels to promote DalesBus and its summer and winter services – printed materials, Twitter and media releases – as well as its well-used and publicised website www.dalesbus.org
A volunteer with some marketing knowledge, skills and expertise is sought to help drive the planned passenger growth of the DalesBus network over the next three years and also to address the negative effects of Covid-19 messaging on public perceptions of public transport – particularly buses.
Each year D&BCIC has to raise around £100,000. Over the last five years there has been a significant drop in funding support from the public sector and D&BCIC has had to devote increasing time and effort to seek funding from commercial sponsors, charitable trusts, local charities, local businesses and individual donations as well as organising fundraising events. This has enabled most of the network to be maintained but much of the resulting funding is only short-term and on a one-off basis, so does not provide security for the future. A volunteer with some fundraising knowledge, skills and expertise is therefore sought to help raise more funding and secure the future of the DalesBus network.
There is a possibility that suitable successful candidates may be invited to join the Board as Directors.
To find out more please email us.
Dales and Bowland Community Interest Company has recently published it's Business Plan for 2021-2023.
The overall aim of the company is to help create the Friends of the Dales’ vision of a “Sustainable Future for the Dales” by working with partner organisations to support and develop sustainable transport into and around the Yorkshire Dales area.
Specifically, in the next three years we aim to:
Dales and Bowland Community Interest Company's annual report for 2019-20 is available to download here (PDF file).
The overall cost of providing and marketing the network in 2019-20 was around around £149,000 with fares income of approx. £63,200, leaving a net cost funding requirement of £85,800.
D&BCIC, together with our partner organisations Friends of the Dales and the Friends of DalesBus, is already seeking funding for the 2021-22 financial year. We would be delighted to hear (via email@example.com) from any individuals, organisations or companies who might be interested in providing financial support, sponsorship or assistance with fundraising.
In the meantime, we’d like to thank everyone who helped support the DalesBus network in 2019-20.
Many summer seasonal DalesBus services into and around the Yorkshire Dales National Park and Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty usually start at Easter weekend.
We are sorry to advise however that this year, due to the COVID-19 outbreak, we have reluctantly decided to delay the introduction of these services until further notice. We will aim to introduce them as soon as possible following the easing of government guidance on social distancing and non-essential travel, whenever that happens.
In the meantime we will endeavour to continue operating our all-year Sunday DalesBus services on the winter timetable for as long as appropriate. We are aware however that reduced bus timetables are likely to be introduced in the West Yorkshire area from next Monday, so the situation may change rapidly."
The latest updates on bus and train services in the Yorkshire Dales area will continue to be available on www.dalesbus.org and on Twitter @dalesbus
Communities across North Yorkshire are benefiting from better Sunday connectivity thanks to TransPennine Express (TPE), as the rail company has donated £12,500 through their Community Rail Partnership Growth Fund to help support a bus service between Northallerton and Hawes that connects into a bus service between Hawes and Garsdale for the Leeds-Settle-Carlisle Railway.
The 856 Wensleydale Flyer between Northallerton and Hawes operates every Sunday and Bank Holiday throughout the year, providing communities such as Bedale, Leyburn and Aysgarth with a direct Sunday service to their county town. The service is also beneficial to the local economy as it helps transport visitors to the Yorkshire Dales National Park to tourist attractions such as the Wensleydale Railway, Aysgarth Falls, the Dales Countryside Museum and Wensleydale Creamery.
The service is managed by volunteers from Dales and Bowland Community Interest Company, part of the Friends of the Dales charity. Their Commercial Director, Paul Chattwood, commented: “We’re very pleased and grateful for TransPennine Express’ support for this valuable service through their Community Rail Partnership Growth Fund. TransPennine Express’ support will enable the service to keep running every Sunday throughout the winter and next summer too, following on from the funding kindly provided by Acorn Stairlifts in recent years.”
Graham Meiklejohn, Regional Development Manager for TransPennine Express, said: “We are delighted to help support this key bus connection that links many communities throughout North Yorkshire, as well as our East Coast Main Line train services with those on the Settle-Carlisle Railway. Not only does this bus service help connect communities and tourists to the rail network at Northallerton, but it also boosts the local economy and helps connect some of the most beautiful parts of the country too.”
For more information on Wensleydale Flyer, visit: www.dalesbus.org/wensleydaleflyer.
The Dales and Bowland Community Interest Company currently manages a network of fifteen summer and five winter weekend bus services in and around the Yorkshire Dales National Park and neighbouring Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It provides the only way for those without cars to visit and travel around the Yorkshire Dales, with around 33,000 passenger journeys being made each year. Nearly two thirds of our passengers could not have visited the Dales without DalesBus services, whilst car owners can benefit from a much wider range of linear walks by using the buses.
In order for these services to continue to be available, we are inviting businesses, charitable trusts and other local organisations to help support the network.
To offer your support or to find out more please contact firstname.lastname@example.org now.
The Dales & Bowland Community Interest Company's annual report for 2018-9 is available to download here (PDF file).
D&BCIC provided a network of 15 Sunday and Bank Holiday DalesBus services to and within the Yorkshire Dales National Park and Nidderdale/ Forest of Bowland Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty throughout Summer 2018. Five services operated on Sundays during the winter months.
D&BCIC is a social enterprise whose single member is a charity, the Yorkshire Dales Society, which is also known as Friends of the Dales. D&BCIC has its own independent board of directors who are all unpaid volunteers working in partnership with commercial bus operators, community transport operators, user groups, local attractions and other businesses and local authorities.
33,391 journeys were made on DalesBus services managed by D&BCIC during 2018-19. The 19% increase from 28,117 journeys in 2017-18 was driven by the reintroduction of a Summer Sunday service linking Otley with Nidderdale, the first full season of Winter Sunday service 24 in Nidderdale and the takeover of the Summer Saturday service between Ilkley and Grassington from North Yorkshire County Council once again.
DalesBus delivers many economic, social and environmental benefits, but D&BCIC needs to secure additional longer-term funding in order to secure the future of the network.
The overall cost of providing and marketing the network in 2018-19, was around £163,700, with fares income of approx. £64,000, leaving a net cost funding requirement of £99,700.
D&BCIC, together with our partner organisations the Friends of the Dales and the Friends of DalesBus, will shortly be starting fundraising activities for the 2020-21 financial year. We would be delighted to hear (via email@example.com) from any individuals, organisations or companies who might be interested in providing financial support, sponsorship or assistance with fundraising.
In the meantime, we’d like to thank everyone who has helped support the DalesBus network in 2019-20.