Presenting Local Travel Information on the World Wide Web: Buckinghamshire and Beyond
SLEVIN R, Buckinghamshire County Council, UK
Public Transport in the UK has been subject to many changes in the past 11 years, starting with bus service deregulation and the privatisation of most bus operators in 1986, and more recently a similar process affecting the rail industry. One of the conse
Public Transport in the UK has been subject to many changes in the past 11 years, starting with bus service deregulation and the privatisation of most bus operators in 1986, and more recently a similar process affecting the rail industry. One of the consequences of these changes is that there is now a much greater diversity of operator involved in the provision of public transport services. Whilst each operator is striving to secure best commercial advantage from the circumstances in which they operate, there has in general been a lack ofwiUingness for operators to collaborate in the provision of comprehensive timetable information. This, at least in part, has been a reflection of the freedom that each operator has (particularly in the bus industry) to make minor timetable changes without any advanced notice, and to make more significant changes on any date by giving just 42 days' notice to the relevant local authorities.
As a consequence of this, and the increasing recognition that a credible public transport system is required if travellers are to be persuaded out &their private cars, many local authorities with transport responsibilities have taken on the task of providing comprehensive public transport timetable information in their areas.
Buckinghamshire County Council is a local authority with transport responsibilities. It covered an area to the north west of London comprising several significant towns, metropolitan fringe communities around London and a large number of rural villages with a total population in excess of 650,000. In April 1997, however, a reorganisation of Local Government in the area resulted in the district of Milton Keynes in the north of the old Buckinghamshire, with a population of about 200,000, becoming a self-contained Unitary Authority, separate ~om Buckinghamshire County Council. Notwithstanding this change in transport responsibilities, a working agreement between the Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes Councils ensures that the provision of public transport information continues to be undertaken on a collaborative basis. The arrangements described in this report, therefore, are now provided jointly by both Buckinghamshire County Council and Milton Keynes Council; for simplicity the word Buckinghamshire is used in this report to refer to the work of the old Buckinghamshire County Council and to what is now the joint work of the two Councils.
Association for European Transport