Scotland’s National Transport Strategy


James Coe Banner

At our CTA Edinburgh Conference last week James spoke about the importance of putting community transport at the heart of Scotland’s National Transport Strategy.  In our latest blog James talks about how community transport operators can get involved in this work.

As a sector we have made a choice.  We have decided that nobody in our communities should be unable to get to where they need to be due to their age, disability, or rural location.  365 days of the year, including Christmas Day, community transport provides trips to medical appointments, school, places of work, and social occasions.

Community transport often works where it would be unviable for the commercial network to do so.  This means as a sector we have had to innovate, providing extra services, and a social value that goes beyond an economic benefit stated in a contract.

This year Minister for Transport and the Islands, Humza Yousaf MSP, announced a full review of the National Transport Strategy to commence in 2017.  This strategy sets out to achieve three strategic outcomes.  These are:

  • Improved journey times and connections between our cities and towns and our global markets to tackle congestion and lack of integration and connections in transport
  • Reduced emissions to tackle climate change, air quality, health improvement
  • Improved quality, accessibility and affordability of transport, to give choice of public transport, better quality services and value for money, or alternative to car

We believe the community transport sector not only has an important role to play in delivering any successful national transport strategy but we also believe there is a lot the wider transport sector can learn from the work we do.

In looking at these three aims we know community transport is helping achieve these already.  Whether that is through providing demand responsive transport which gets people to the next leg of their journey, providing connections between towns and cities.  Providing communal transport where otherwise only car travel would be possible.  Or, providing an inclusive and accessible transport option that provides a service to those who are unable access mainstream services.

Over the coming months we will be formulating our response and looking at how we can put community transport at the heart of Scotland’s National Transport Strategy.  As ultimately, we believe that a transport system is successful where it is community led, accessible and inclusive, and properly integrated with major infrastructure and other modes of transport.

You can find out more about the National Transport Strategy here

If you would like to discuss some ideas and be involved in putting together our response to the National Transport Strategy you can contact me at, and we’ll discuss how you can get involved.

One thought on “Scotland’s National Transport Strategy”

  1. This sounds promising and I’d like to help in any way I can. I live in Aberdeen with my husband and two children (aged 6 and 9) and we don’t own a car. Instead we walk and cycle everywhere. However it’s not safe for my children to cycle on the road here because they’re cycling next to cars, trucks, and buses. My 9-year-old is also autistic and not ready to cycle in traffic.

    I want the city council to build dedicated cycle paths that are not shared with motor vehicles or traffic and I’ve been writing to them for two years now about the problem but have had no success. The main street through the centre of town – Union St – is four lanes dedicated to motor vehicles and not a single inch for bicycles. When I cycle along it with my children we are surrounded by buses and it’s frightening.

    I firmly believe the council should put up barrier immediately, even if just temporary, to avoid a fatality. I’ve suggested they create a lane for bicycles using traffic cones (they have told me in the past that they don’t have the money to build proper bike paths) since traffic cones are inexpensive and could be a temporary measure until funding is available.

    What else can I do? I’m struggling to make any leeway with the council but feel this is an urgent matter. I started a petition for my local primary school to have bicycle paths for children going to and from school and this has had good support from other parents at the school. It’s online here:


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