Labor promises a school bus service to Helensburgh if elected

Bus promise: Labor candidate for Heathcote  Maryanne Stuart and students at Helensburgh station.
Bus promise: Labor candidate for Heathcote Maryanne Stuart and students at Helensburgh station.

Labor candidate for Heathcote Maryanne Stuart has promised a new school bus service will be introduced for students from Helensburgh and adjoining areas if Labor wins the election.

In another development following last week's Leader report about overcrowding at Helensburgh railway station, Heathcote MP Lee Evans said he had previously taken steps to have the situation reviewed.

More than 400 students travel from the station each morning to high schools at Heathcote and Engadine.

Most catch the 8.11am service because others around that time do not stop before Sutherland.

Ms Stewart said Labor's plan to introduce a new school bus service was in response to a strong community campaign on behalf of 400 students from Helensburgh, Otford, Darkes Forest and Stanwell Tops who commuted up to two hours and 20 minutes each day to and from school.

"The Liberals' cuts to the train timetable has increased congestion on trains and increased the risks for children travelling on these busy services," she said.

Mr Evans, who hoped to retain Heathcote for the Liberals at the March 28 election, said transport officials were asked to review the matter before the government went into "caretaker mode" after he wrote to Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian.

He said he was not aware of there being any "groundswell" of community concern until this month.

"A year ago, St John Bosco High School approached me about trying to buy ex-government buses, which could be used for this and other purposes, but nothing further came of it," he said.

Mr Evans said his office was contacted by a campaign organiser last month while he was caring for his mother, who had since died.

He said she was asked to obtain letters of support from the P & C committees of the high affected schools but they had not yet been received.

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