Two brand new Community Access Buses were launched on Tuesday 12th February by Blue Mountains City Council in conjunction with Great Community Transport. The twenty one seater Toyota Coasters are fully automatic and replace the well-used, manual Coasters that have been in service to the community for over seven years.
Typical upper mountains weather provided a misty backdrop for the occasion held at The Conservation Hut, Wentworth Falls. Present for the launch was Councillor Chris Van Der Kley, Helen Walker OAM, Manager of Great Community Transport as well as volunteer drivers and representatives from various community groups that utilise this critical community resource.
There was a true sense of occasion to the gathering. Following speeches, thankyous and anecdotes, volunteers and groups had a rare chance to meet one another as well as the staff and organisers that make the Access Bus a success.
The overriding message was one of gratitude and appreciation with the upgrade of the buses described as “A marvellous and noble gesture by Blue Mountains City Council.” By Tim Sanford, volunteer driver and member of the Central Blue Mountains Garden Club, regularly users of the Access Bus for social outings and club events.
The 21 seater (including driver) Access Buses are available to hire for not for profit community groups based in the Blue Mountains. They serve as a vital lifeline for many small and special interest groups as an affordable way of taking day or overnight trips.
This fabulous resource is a great example of cooperation. Blue Mountains City Council, keen community groups and tireless volunteers work together to benefit the community as a whole, especially the aged and frail, low income and transport disadvantaged. Look out for the shiny new buses and their happy passengers as they move up and down the Mountains on their way to exciting destinations.
The hire of these vehicles is managed through Smartlink Transport, a project of Great Community Transport