“Bring Back Our X1” Urges Monica

"Covid-19  should not be used as an excuse for withdrawing this essential service"

x1

Hamilton residents launch new campaign to reinstate the X1 bus service

Residents across Hamilton have mounted a fresh campaign demanding the return of the X1 express bus service. The popular public transport route was axed by FirstBus in July 2020.

A rallying photocall organised by Monica  saw more than 100 people gather to demand that transport chiefs draw up plans for the reinstatement of the X1. Lennon praised the residents for their passion and determination, pledging to work with the community and cross-party politicians until the bus service is restored.

Monica said:

The X1 bus was always a vital route between Hamilton and Earnock that should never have been axed.

“Covid-19  should not be used as an excuse for withdrawing this essential service, but our communities need access to reliable bus services now, more than ever.

“Local residents are united in calling for the X1 to be reinstated. I pay tribute to their passion and determination and will work with them and politicians from all parties until we have an X1 service once again.”

Earnock resident Lorraine Garrow said: “My neighbours are feeling like prisoners within their own homes. I find it difficult watching older residents being unable to access healthcare or paying £15 for a return taxi journey to attend GP appointments in central Hamilton. One neighbour has spent £75 in a single month attending repeat appointments.”

 

Hamilton South Councillor Gavin Keatt said:

“I’ve been inundated with correspondence from constituents advising me of the impact that the removal of the X1 has had on their daily lives. Many constituents rely on costly taxi journeys and are worried about the impact of the introduction of the Glasgow Low Emission Zone. Scottish Government climate targets are commendable, but the infrastructure is simply not there to achieve them. The reintroduction of the X1 will have a considerably positive impact throughout our communities and I’m fully behind the campaign”.

 

Brian Willshire who attends classes for retired people at the University of Strathclyde said:

"Since the X1 was axed, I am forced get a taxi to Hamilton West station to travel to Glasgow by train. The government want more people using buses, so it makes no sense to take the X1 away.”

 

Margaret and Jim Addie:

“Not having the X1 service has been lifechanging for residents. My neighbours and I were reliant on the bus to get to Hamilton town centre for shopping and GP appointments. We have lived in the estate for 42 years. We are lucky we have a car, but as we are both in our eighties, we need access to public transport.

 

Secretary of Earnock Residents’ Association, Sally Dallas said: “We have many elderly residents who are no longer able to drive or are fit enough to walk to the nearest bus stop route to Hamilton. It is not only about necessary medical appointments but social interactions. Covid was very isolating for all of us but this isolation has been extended for the residents of Earnock when there is no access to local public transport for people with limited mobility.”

Campaigners met at the Davington Drive bus stop in Earnock, including members of Earnock Residents Association to highlight the importance of the X1 to workers and students, with many arguing the bus withdrawal has disadvantaged older and disabled people.

Monica Lennon is an MSP for the Central Scotland Region. In 2021, she passed the ground-breaking Period Product (Scotland) Act. Follow her on Twitter for recent updates.