Sidmouth Hopper bus cash pledge hope

PUBLISHED: 13:57 11 February 2011

BUS HOPE: Councillors Peter Sullivan,John Dyson and driver Jim Tucker with the 10,000th Sidmouth Hopper customers Madge and Terry Foley in September last year. Picture by Terry Ife ref shs 1627-38-10TI

BUS HOPE: Councillors Peter Sullivan,John Dyson and driver Jim Tucker with the 10,000th Sidmouth Hopper customers Madge and Terry Foley in September last year. Picture by Terry Ife ref shs 1627-38-10TI

Archant

SIDMOUTH’S Hopper bus has been handed a cash boost worth thousands of pounds.

SIDMOUTH’S Hopper bus has been handed a cash boost worth thousands of pounds.

Driving forces hope a pledge from the Sid Vale Association’s Keith Owen Fund- to match donations from businesses- will help keep it running for years to come.

The money will prove vital as the valued summer service, which carried more than 10,000 passengers in 2010, moves away from dwindling public funding - according to its co-ordinator, working party chairman and town councillor John Dyson.

“I’m delighted to announce the Keith Owen Fund has provided a grant to the Hopper for the next three years at a level of £4,000 to £7,000 to match support given by businesses in the town,” Councillor Dyson told the Herald this week.

“We have raised just short of £4,000 from the business community and we should hope, in due course, to increase that to nearer £7,000. The Hopper will then be fully supported in approximately equal measures by Sidmouth Town Council, local businesses and the Sid Vale Association through the Keith Owen Fund.”

Mr Dyson added the “three-pronged” approach would be a significant step towards making the Hopper a “sustainable addition to Sidmouth’s summer offer to visitors and local residents alike.”

“This puts the onus on the working party to encourage businesses to support it,” said Mr Dyson.

“One hundred pounds would mean £200 for the Hopper. I hope that incentive will carry weight with business people from within the town who benefit from this service.”

The Herald reported last year how the Hopper faced losing £5,000 of East Devon District Council cash- a third of its overall funding.

“We have got to raise as much extra money as we can,” said Mr Dyson.

“I can guarantee the bus will run this year from May 1 to September 30.

“We’re very grateful for the support we’ve had in recent years and are aiming to build on that,” he added.


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Sidmouth Herald. Click the link in the yellow box below for details.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years, through good times and bad, serving as your advocate and trusted source of local information. Our industry is facing testing times, which is why I’m asking for your support. Every single contribution will help us continue to produce award-winning local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Thank you.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the Sidmouth Herald