Bussing in the Hypocrisy

Many users of our public transport services will be aware of the cuts to local bus services for residents while Royal Holloway University provides bus services for its own students.

At a meeting of the Royal Holloway and Runnymede Consultative Group in November last year the college’s Director of Estates, Mike Berry, was asked if those university buses could be used by local residents.

“We cannot actively promote the service” Mr Berry advised, “to avoid being mistaken as a community service provision which wouldn’t be correct as this is a student bus service”.

Is that a long-winded way of saying “No” ?

Mike Berry, Royal Holloway Director of Estates, said “..this is a student bus service”

Compare Mr Berry’s response with the forward-thinking attitude of the University of Southampton whose students and local residents enjoy the benefits of Unilink.

According to Unilink’s website, ‘Unilink was created in 2001 to transport University staff and students between teaching sites and halls of residence, whilst also providing a bus service that is open for everyone to use…’

So, not only is the service open to everyone but the handsome-liveried buses are proud to promote that.

University bus links anyone can use

Meanwhile, Royal Holloway continues to promote its straplines that it is ‘proud of its long-standing links with the local community’ and that ‘Our relationship with our wider community is important to us.’

Just when will Royal Holloway realise that local residents are no longer taken in by such platitudes and that we believe the university sees the local community as little more than an extension to its campus to be used to house its students and as an overflow car park?