Change font size:
Outside the Box
Close Navigation
< Back to Blog

Have your say on Scotland’s Transport Strategy

Posted September 27th 2019 by Anne Connor

Over the past few years we have been hearing how important an issue transport is for many people and communities – the difference it makes when it works well and the far-reaching impacts when people cannot get access to reliable, affordable transport.

The Scottish Government is now consulting on a National Transport Strategy. Responses need to be in by   23 October 2019.

This blog tells you about the strategy and what Outside the Box is doing to respond.  We hope people will help us get more people and communities involved in contributing your views and shaping what happens next.

About the strategy

This strategy sets out the Scottish Government’s long-term view for the next 20 years. The vision is for a sustainable, inclusive and accessible transport system which:

  • Promotes equality
  • Takes climate action
  • Helps the economy – people travelling to work and for other reasons, right for residents and tourists, reliable and efficient
  • Improves people’s health and wellbeing – is safe and secure, enables us to make healthy travel choices, lets people have links within there communities.

Promoting equalities includes access to older and disabled people and other equalities groups, making it easy to use transport and being affordable for everyone.

The strategy includes many points that we have heard from people through the Rural Wisdom project and other groups we are working alongside.

  • There is a section on poverty and child poverty and the way the proposed strategy contributes to tackling poverty. This includes over a million people in Scotland affected by  ‘transport poverty’ – when people don’t have access to essential services or work due to limited affordable transport options.
  • It recognises the links between access to transport and reducing social isolation and discussions of how access to transport affects women, young people, older people and disabled people.
  • There is a discussion of the impacts for employment – transport to get people to work, jobs in these sectors and the workforce.
  • It looks at the transport issues in towns and in remote, rural and island communities, and the issues around poor transport contributing to economic and social difficulties for people living in these places.
  • It shows the difficulties people in rural areas have using hospital services when there is poor transport.
  • It includes the impact of disruption when there is bad winter weather.

The strategy looks at advances in technology and how these might contribute to solutions, such as reducing energy use and damage to the environment, use of digital technology and new forms of transport.

Chapter 4 sets out the actions that will reduce current problems and/or make improvements.  The actions include:

  • Making more links between transport and what works for communities
  • Improving services and reduce costs for people and businesses in rural areas
  • Better information when there is extreme weather or incidents disrupting travel
  • Scotland making good, early use of innovations that improve transport
  • Ensure transport in Scotland is accessible for everyone
  • Better connections between transport so it links up to be an easier overall journey, and make it more accessible
  • Reduce the negative impacts that transport can have on people’s safety and their health and wellbeing
  • Improve sustainable access to health care buildings/services
  • Promote active travel choices
  • Move to more sustainable forms of transport for people and for commercial transport
  • Improve the resilience to disruption when there is bad weather
  • Ensure the transport system adapts to climate change impacts. 

Chapter 5 looks at how plans and decisions are made about transport in Scotland and who is responsible for which aspects of the overall system.  The conclusion is that the current system needs to change.  The proposal is of a form of regional model, so decisions can take account of all forms of transport and reflect local circumstances.    This is an area where the Government is going to take longer look at how this can work.

Chapter 6 is what the Government will do next:

  • Establish a Transport Strategy Delivery Board
  • Engage with people and communities around the policy and what will make it happen. There will be new Transport Citizens’ Panels so the Government will continue to hear the lived experiences of people across Scotland
  • Continue to talk to business
  • Develop new arrangements for who is responsible for transport in Scotland and how decisions are made
  • Develop new ways to monitor what is happening, with an annual report on progress and outcomes
  • Build in an approach to sustainable transport across all Scottish Government policies
  • Consult on and publish a Delivery Plan
  • Follow up on changes in the Transport Bill on a new model for bus services to meet local needs.
What we are doing next

Outside the Box will be making a response to the consultation.    We will use the points people have told us so far, and we can include other points you want us to include.  Please send your notes to by 16th October.

After the consultation we will still be working with groups in many places to raise transport issues and share examples of community transport schemes and other transport services that people find work well.

What you can do

We hope other people will also make your own response to the consultation and contribute your views.

Here are some points for responding to consultations like this if you are new to this sort of thing

  • You don’t have to answer all the questions they ask. It is of to skip some and just focus on the aspects that are important to you.
  • Have a look at the on-line consultation before you start, as you’ll see how the questions are set out.
  • There is space to add any other points you want to raise.
  • Many people find it helps to write your replies on a word file first, then paste in the answers. That also lets you send it round the notes in your group or team and get it right before you start on the proper version.
  • You can save what you’ve done and come back to it later.
  • You can also respond in writing and post it back to the Government. The details for this are at the website for responses.

Tell us how you get on and please share examples of transport that is benefitting people in your communities.




No comments yet.

Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Certified Living Wage

Outside the Box is a certified living wage employer