MP for Penrith and The Border, and longstanding campaigner for fair post-16 transport for all, Dr Neil Hudson, paid tribute to Eden District Council for listening to his repeated calls to better support youngsters in rural Cumbria access education and training.
Having provided his expert support to Eden District Council’s team throughout the policy-making process, Dr Hudson was pleased to finally signpost families who he has been working with to secure affordable, sustainable and fair transport for. The scheme is part of the Council’s Inspiring Eden initiative and will provide bursaries for travel costs to get youngsters to school or college where options are limited.
Currently 16-18-year-olds must rightly continue in education or training; however, the authorities are not required to provide transport for them. Something Dr Hudson has repeatedly fought against in Parliament, through speeches, ministerial questions and locally by getting councils and educators around the table together.
Already having amassed more than 1,000 signatures, Dr Hudson’s petition calling on Local Councils and Government to work collaboratively to support transport for 16+ year olds access education or training affordably, sustainably and fairly is still live.
Dr Neil Hudson, MP for Penrith and The Border, said:
“I’m pleased the council is listening to me and has agreed to progress with this lifechanging scheme. Young people growing up in rural parts of the UK such as ours have too long been penalised with eye-watering transport bills or been forced to lower their expectations and make negative decisions about their futures. If we allow this to continue, we are failing our talented young people who want to achieve their goals.
“I know from speaking to constituents who have raised their acute concerns with me that this announcement is definitely cause for celebration and will put our young folk on the right path towards future success.
“Thanks once again to Eden District Council, this is a great step in the right direction towards a fair policy for rural youngsters up and down the UK. I now hope that the new combined authority; Westmorland and Furness, will also see the undoubted benefits of this scheme and provide comprehensive transport support for our young people in Cumbria.”
To find out more or apply to the scheme, email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, address and contact details to receive an application pack. The deadline to register interest is Friday 11th November.