Stripped bus routes means Northampton children face three-mile walk to and from school every day

Pupils outside the catchment area for Moulton School and Science College are faced with an hour's walk to and from school each day.
Pupils outside the catchment area for Moulton School and Science College are faced with an hour's walk to and from school each day.

Children from Northampton are facing hour-long walks to school and back in the dark after a vital bus route was cut last month.

Parents say they are "frightened" for their children heading into the winter months with no means of transport to reach the Moulton School & Science College.

Shaziah Gordon is one 15-year-old who is faced with walking an hour to school and back every day.

Shaziah Gordon is one 15-year-old who is faced with walking an hour to school and back every day.

Although the school runs a bus route for families inside the catchment area, houses further away have to rely on public transport - like the recently shortened No 19 Uno Violet route.

One parent, Sharmaine Ryan, says her daughter Mekeda is faced with leaving the house at 7am to walk an hour to school and has done it every day since term started.

Sharmaine said: "It's going to get dark soon. I work shifts and I can't take her. I can't bear to see her to go to school and come home every night in the dark.

"She hates it. She wants to change school. She loves Moulton SSC but she doesn't want to do that walk anymore.

The Uno No 19 Violet bus was cut short at the beginning of August - but many residents are already feeling an impact on their lives.

The Uno No 19 Violet bus was cut short at the beginning of August - but many residents are already feeling an impact on their lives.

"I just think it's so bad. I know they [Uno] aren't obliged to run the bus but there must be an alternative."

They are amongst the hundreds of other Northampton residents who used to catch the No 19 Uno Violet bus to visit friends, make it to work and go to school - but the route was revised last month.

Earlier this week the Chronicle & Echo launched a petition to reinstate the No 19 Uno Violet bus on its original route once an hour after dozens of elderly residents said they now feel like "prisoners in their own homes".

Another parent, Jackie Spence, says her 15-year-old daughter Shaziah is faced with changing schools during the last year of her exams or walking three miles to school every day.

Sign the Chronicle & Echo's petition to reinstate the No 19 bus service for the people of Northampton who need it the most.

Sign the Chronicle & Echo's petition to reinstate the No 19 bus service for the people of Northampton who need it the most.

Jackie said: "It's not fair. It would cost £18 a week to use another bus that goes into town first.

"It rained hard this week and Shaziah was late because I just didn't want to send her out in it.

"The bus was her lifeline. I don't know how we're going to get by in the winter."