THE cost of community transport to take pensioners to a lunch club in Trowell has rocketed from £1 per person to £5.
Some pensioners are picked up and taken just yards down the road for the Age Concern lunch club each week – and as of this month they will see a 400 per cent hike in the cost of their lifts from Nottinghamshire County Council.
Arthur Walters, 77, has used the bus for more than seven years to get to the club, which he attends every Friday without fail. He said for as long as he can remember, members had paid 50p each for the bus, with the club contributing 50p.
“It’s ridiculous,” he said.
“It makes life difficult for us because we are living on our pensions.
“They have singled out old people and we are all up in arms about it.”
He said that everyone at the club has rejected the proposal and are all looking into cheaper options, like sharing taxis.
Cllr Kevin Rostance, cabinet member for adult social care and health, said: “No-one wants to make life any tougher than it needs to be for our older, vulnerable people, but nobody will be charged who’s unable to pay and we’ve taken care to phase in the price increases for meals and transport over a number of years.
“The fact is we have to confront an unprecedented financial reality and the only way we can do this is to work smarter and more cost-effectively.”
n Read a letter from Arthur on page six.