Photo gallery: Minister has high praise for Norfolk’s public transport schemes

Baroness Kramer visiting the Norwich Park & Ride Holdall scheme at Thickthorn. Photo: Bill Smith Baroness Kramer visiting the Norwich Park & Ride Holdall scheme at Thickthorn. Photo: Bill Smith

Monday, July 28, 2014
3:11 PM

A minister has hailed Norfolk as leading the way for the rest of the country in public transport.

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Baroness Kramer with Norfolk Car Club founder Rex Warner. Photo: Bill SmithBaroness Kramer with Norfolk Car Club founder Rex Warner. Photo: Bill Smith

Baroness Kramer, Minister of State for Transport, visited the county today to announce a £500,000 boost to car sharing clubs around England.

She praised the Norfolk Car Club, which was set up by Rex Warner four years ago and currently has 17 designated spaces around the city.

For a small membership fee, members are able to book cars in advance, paying a minimal hourly rate and the price of petrol.

The not-for-profit club has seen a dramatic rise in numbers, and hopes to expand to 80 spaces in the next five years.

Norfolk Car Club, founded by Rex Warner. Photo: Bill SmithNorfolk Car Club, founded by Rex Warner. Photo: Bill Smith

Baroness Kramer said: “Car clubs cut congestion, reduce carbon and save people money will still giving people the freedom and flexibility to use a car when they want to.

“One of the special things about the Norfolk service is that it operates in rural as well as urban areas. People can see the logic of them in urban areas, but trying to see the effect it can play in rural areas is the difficult part.”

Under the government’s plans, more than 40 car clubs from around England, inlcuding the Norfolk Car Club, will be able to bid for a share of the £500,000 to expand their service.

It is estimated that car club users save thousands of poounds a year on insurance, MOT and tax costs, while one rental car is thought to take the place of 17 individually owned vehicles on the road.

While in Norfolk, Baroness Kramer also praised the holdall bus smartcard scheme, which was introduced earlier this year and allows passengers to pre-pay for their journeys on many of the county’s different bus services.

The minister, who used the service to arrive at Thickthorn Park and Ride, said: “We are now getting to know more about journeys people want to do, telling us more about what people need. The flexibility of the service is the challenge - and Norfolk is rising to it.

“Norfolk County Council have been very forward looking in trying to achieve what they have. It is hard to achieve across the county and having an area which is willing to be cutting edge is crucial.”

The £2.5m scheme, similar to the Oyster card commonly used in London, will help to introduce a similar ticketing scheme elsewhere in the country.

For more information and a full story, see tomorrow’s paper.

5 comments

  • Can someone tell me what planet this minister lives on? It certainly isn't earth!

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    biglingers

    Tuesday, July 29, 2014

  • I've just come back from a week in Devon. The buses were all clean, the drivers friendly, bus stops all clearly marked and supplied with timetable information. Compare this with the awful First Group operating in Norfolk. Dirty old clapped out buses, no timetable information at our local X1 bus stop, and on my way back from the railway station, the rudest (female) driver I've ever met. She's a First X1 driver from the Yarmouth depot I believe.

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    Norfolk and Good

    Monday, July 28, 2014

  • Cheaper to hire a car than use the high priced car club!

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    IT Man

    Monday, July 28, 2014

  • They need to take her on a Journey around Dereham Road, Grapes Hill and Chapelfield, to be told how much money has been wasted on altering the road layout nearly every year for the past 5 years or more. And ask her to wait for a bus from the City Centre to the Airport Trading Estate, via Vulgar Road , oops meant Vulcan Road. She'd die of a natural death before that service arrived on time or at all !!!

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    che bramley

    Monday, July 28, 2014

  • in holland they launched a smartcard scheme 7 years ago that is now valid on all buses and trains and trams all over the country, regardless of which company operates them. We're supposed to applaud an overpriced card with a ridiculous name only valid on Norfolk P&R! you're having a laugh.

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    Mooseyt4

    Monday, July 28, 2014

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