Fife Council is to lay on a bus service for residents of a Tayport housing estate – to take them to a bus stop some 100 yards away.
Around 70 people living in Scott Crescent, on the outskirts of the town, signed a petition complaining about the withdrawal of the number 92 bus service, run by Moffat and Williamson on behalf of the local authority.
The operator said it was no longer possible to extend the service to Scott Crescent because it was too difficult for the new, wider buses – which are required by law – to negotiate the route due to the number of parked cars.
The vehicles were suffering damage to their wheels and side panels by trying to squeeze past and were unable to get round the mini-roundabout in one go.
The petition, organised by Scott Crescent resident Rosalind Connor, claimed that the service was frequently used by the elderly and infirm as well as families with young children.
The nearest bus stop was in Scotscraig Drive, which involved walking down a steep hill.
The petition called for funding to cut back grassed areas and verges to create roomfor more parking spaces so the buses could manoeuvre more easily.
And, said objectors, since other large vehicles such as delivery lorries appeared to have no trouble using the route, the bus drivers perhaps needed more training.
Murray Hannah, Fife Council’s road safety and traffic management manager, told north east Fife area committee on Wednesday that it was not considered appropriate to introduce waiting restrictions or to reinforce the verges as it was too costly and too time-consuming.
Instead, the local authority’s public transport team had decided to extend the Go-Flexi service – an ‘on demand’ bus service that operates in some rural areas – to take in Scott Crescent in order to support residents with mobility problems.
The service, which is booked in advance, would take residents to the nearest bus stop.
He also gave an assurance that Scott Crescent would continue to be gritted.
Councillors rubber-stamped the officials’ decision but Councillor Bryan Poole, who represents Cupar, asked that his dissent be recorded.
“It is nice to be helpful,” he said.
“But it’s less than 100 yards between Scott Crescent and Scotscraig Drive.
“How many other areas in Fife would qualify for a Go-Flexi bus?
“Fife Council could be accused of inequality.”
It was agreed to review the situation after six months.