LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Mayor tells buses ‘porky pie’

ON the 13th of this month, a large coloured fold-out leaflet entitled Get There With The Mayor’s Fare arrived with our post.

“Mayor’s fare”, I think, is a bit of a porky-pie. Viewing both sides of the unfolded leaflet, I spot a very tiny set of Royal Arms and the words “UK Government” which acknowledges, extremely quietly, that this lot of £2 fares is actually government funded. I read further to see if I can find any explanation of the now increasingly awful bus services on our patch. One full side of the leaflet is occupied by a sketch-map where the four constituent boroughs of the new South Yorkshire are depicted minus their boundaries with each other.

A perplexingly, bizarre and illogically assembled set of place names has been peppered onto the blue background of the map. On the eastern side of it are such small places as Fenwick and Moorends (in Doncaster) and Lindrick (in Rotherham). Between Rotherham, Tickhill and Firbeck there is a sea of blue which appears to be devoid of settlements. Maltby and Hellaby together have more than 20,000 inhabitants but neither these nor indeed Bramley and Wickersley merit a mention in the new Coppard-land.

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Around and within this map is information about tourist attractions. In Rotherham borough, Wentworth Woodhouse and Magna are highlighted but there is no mention of the town’s outstandingly fine Parish Church (now re-named ‘Rotherham Minster’), no mention of its rare and beautiful Bridge Chapel and not a whisper regarding Roche Abbey whose national importance has, for more than a century, been recognised by the succession of government agencies which have now evolved into English Heritage.

It is concerning that the South Yorkshire Mayor has ignored such gems. (Perhaps we can blame RMBC for failing to draw his attention to them!). Two are within spitting distance of Rotherham bus station and Roche can be reached from buses to Maltby followed by a beautiful and undemanding walk down the valley.

If Mr Coppard is to gain the confidence of the inhabitants of Rotherham, it behoves him to demonstrate that he, and the folk who do his bidding, know a darn sight more about the 110.6 square miles which comprise it. He might then see the need to send us better buses!     

Alice Rodgers, Maltby

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