DART isn’t a personal chauffeur service

I read with interest the article you published concerning DART Transport and the complaints of two gentlemen in Banbridge.

The point I would like to make is that both individuals live in town, and have only been ‘let down’ by DART on one or two occasions. One complainant commenting that the bus is supposed to be available from 7.30am and yet he had to wait until 8.15am before he got a lift.

Presumably the DART service isn’t a personal chauffeur, available for their sole use. Is it not likely that someone else needed the service?

The acronym DART is Down, Armagh Rural Transport, and is supposed to provide a lifeline to people in rural communities to access hospital, doctors, shopping etc. I note that the two people both live in Banbridge, where there is ample taxi services and local bus routes available.

As someone who lives some six miles from Banbridge, not on a bus route and in an area where taxis charge double to fee to come to collect, I think these demands and complaints are selfish and unreasonable. Whilst I accept the DART service is open to all, whilst people with access to other transport are using it as their personal transport to get to place of work, others are deprived the service to access community services, appointments and shopping.

I do not blame DART for this, more the fact that town dwellers are using the service when other options are available.

Jon Bird

Outside Blackskull