New status and Board members for Bus Users UK

New status and Board members for Bus Users UK

Bus Users UK has officially become a registered UK charity.

The change in status will see the organisation focus on the wider community with a new mission to “bring people and communities together through socially inclusive transport”.

As part of the change, Bus Users has also appointed two new Board members, Jennie Martin who joins as a Director and Ben Colson MBE as Chair.

Since 2004, Jennie Martin has been Secretary General of ITS (Intelligent Transport Systems) UK, a membership organisation that works to deliver the benefits of ITS in terms of economic efficiency, transport safety and environmental impact.

Jennie works extensively with government and transport bodies and is a keen advocate for equitable transport provision that serves all sectors of society.

Speaking at the recent Bus Users UK Supporters Event, Jennie said: “For decades there has been an over-emphasis among transport policy makers on the car, and the risk now is that they are being seduced by automated individual transport. This is a crucial time for those of us who believe that it is mass transit - whether bus, coach, train or tram – that will serve our cities better.”

Ben Colson was co-founder of Norfolk Green and is currently a Trustee of community transport organisation Go West Travel Ltd. Ben has been awarded the UK Bus Awards Lifetime Achievement Award for services to the bus industry and in 2015, received an MBE for services to the economy and community of West Norfolk.

Ben said: “As funding is increasingly cut, and operators are facing unprecedented pressures from lifestyle changes, so the range and number of bus services available for people without a car, or who choose not to drive a car, is dwindling. My aim is to bring a new perspective and energy to those engaged in the crucial role of championing communities who rely on local bus services.”

Welcoming the appointments, Claire Walters, Chief Executive of Bus Users UK said: “Ben Colson and Jennie Martin bring a huge amount of energy and expertise to the Bus Users Board as the organisation enters an exciting phase in its development.

“As a UK registered charity, Bus Users will aim to ensure that public transport is fully inclusive and accessible, and able to meet the transport needs of all communities.”

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