THERE IS GOOD news for travellers as two well-known bus companies have recently introduced a new service from Aberystwyth to Birmingham.
Megabus announced last week that they have partnered with Aberystwyth-based company Mid Wales Travel to create a new bus service, the M39, which will take passengers from Aberystwyth to Birmingham.
The partnership will allow the M39 service to be a Mid Wales Travel vehicle, with Megabus branding inside, and will operate on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
Travellers will benefit from the timetable, which will offer day and weekend trips to Birmingham and surrounding areas, with stops along the way including Welshpool, Telford, Shrewsbury and Wolverhampton.
From Birmingham, the service will include stops such as London and Liverpool, allowing more links for the student community and local residents.
If that was not enough motivation to use the new service, travellers will benefit from its low fares, which start at £1 with a booking fee of 50p.
Of the new service, Mel Evans, who owns Mid Wales Travel, said: “We are pleased to be continuing our partnership with Megabus.com with our new M39 service from Aberystwyth to Birmingham.
We hope local residents will find this a low cost, convenient travel option to Birmingham and the other stops we’re offering on the route.”
The partnership between Megabus and Mid Wales Travel has already been successful over the last 12 months as both companies have worked together to form the M7 service, which currently operates from Aberystwyth to London via Cardiff.
The Herald took to the streets this week to find out what Aberystwyth residents thought about the upcoming bus service.
One resident said: “I think this is a really good idea, especially with today’s economy and high travel prices. I was amazed to hear the low prices and, though I felt sceptical about it, I have a feeling that it will be very successful. I wish both Mid Wales Travel and Megabus the best of luck with it!”
Another person told The Herald: “I will be very curious to see how this works. I hope it does, but I have a feeling that it is all positive words and figures until both companies deliver an evidently good service. When Traws Cymru introduced the free weekend bus travel a few months ago, I thought that was a good idea.
“The more I learnt and heard people’s experiences with it, the more I feel any travel idea that the council or travel companies put forward is great but what they deliver is more important. As the old saying goes, the proof is in the pudding.
“I used to travel regularly on the Megabus but now, I travel more frequently on Mid Wales Travel services. I think the quality of travel is very good for both companies, so I certainly hope the plans work out for them and their customers.”
A student studying at the local university added: “I really think this is a fantastic scheme for everyone, especially for students such as myself. With students surviving on very little money from loans these days, due to the high university fees and the way the economy is in today’s society, I think many students will benefit from it.
“I’m from London and so it’s great to think that the service will not only be low in price, but I will also have the option of the other stops along the way.
“On some weekends, when I want a break from University work, I like to travel to Aberaeron and even Carmarthen on the Traws Cymru services because of the free travel scheme.
“Initially, I didn’t think it would work that well as I expected huge numbers of people every weekend crowding the bus, but considering it is a very well used scheme I know that Megabus and Mid Wales will do well with the M39.
“My thoughts are, if the Traws Cymru services are doing well from the free weekend travel scheme, then I know the M39 will do exceptionally well because of the high demand for that service.
“It is so important to cater to the target audiences, and in the case of Megabus and MidWales travel, I would think students and residents of the designated stops would be the answer.
“From my experience of being an Aberystwyth student, there is nothing worse than living in quite a remote place but yet having limited ways of travelling home, with the only options you do have being very expensive.
“My friends always say the same thing and with train fares continuously going up, buses are the alternative option for non-drivers. So I know they will be pleased with this news!
“All in all, I believe that students and keen travellers will enjoy the benefits from the M39 service, and I look forward to seeing how successful it will turn out to be.”
Ceredigion’s first ‘Welsh in the Workplace’ Fair to be held
CEREDIGION’S first ‘Welsh in the Workplace’ Fair will be held to encourage and support businesses who want to increase their bilingual provision in their daily work.
With the 2020 Ceredigion National Eisteddfod on the horizon, Cered: Menter Iaith Ceredigion’s Welsh in the Workplace Officers are busy assisting the county’s businesses in benefitting from the use of Welsh in their business. To this end, the Welsh will be the focus for a special event at the beginning of October with a Welsh in the Workplace Fair.
Huw Marshall from ‘Yr Awr Gymraeg’ (The Welsh hour) will lead in how to raise your business profile and how to effectively market in order to attract more customers. During the day there will be opportunities to ask a panel of businesses who already operate bilingually whilst learning from their experiences and the challenges they faced. The panel will consist of Emlyn Jones (Diogel Events), Kerry Ferguson (Gwe Cambrian), Eleri Davies (Blaenwaun Caravan Park) and Sioned Thomas (Ffenestri Kevin Thomas Windows), chaired by Keith Henson (Coleg Ceredigion).
Councillor Catherine Hughes, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Culture said, “It is heart-warming to see a valuable and important Fair such as this being held in Ceredigion for the first time by Cered. It’s a very special opportunity to see businesses in one place and hear the experiences from those who use the Welsh language daily in their work.”
Later in the afternoon, there will be opportunities for businesses to visit an array of information stands from Learn Welsh, Ceredigion Training, Cynnal y Cardi, Business Wales, Antur Teifi, the Welsh Language Commissioner, Coleg Ceredigion and Cymraeg Byd Busnes.
The Fair is to be held on Thursday, 04 October 2018, between 10:30 and 15:30 at Cardigan Castle. Limited spaces are available, so register and reserve your place on tocyn.cymru. Simultaneous translation facilities and refreshments including tea and coffee will be available.
The ‘Welsh in the Workplace’ project has received LEADER support through the Cynnal y Cardi Local Action Group (administered by Ceredigion County Council) which is funded through the Welsh Government Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, which is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Welsh Government.
For further information, contact Pat Jones, Welsh Language Business Development Officer, Cered, Menter Iaith Ceredigion on Pat.email@example.com or 01545 572350.
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Join the stand against scams
CEREDIGION residents will get the opportunity to learn more about how they can protect themselves against scams in an event to be held at the Bandstand, Aberystwyth on 27 September between 9:30am and 1:30pm.
Ceredigion County Council have joined the National Trading Standards (NTS) Scams Team and Wales Against Scam Partnership (WASP) who will be touring Wales holding scam awareness events between 24 and 28 September.
Friends Against Scams is an NTS initiative that aims to protect and prevent people from becoming victims of scams by empowering communities to ‘Take a Stand Against Scams’.
Councillor Gareth Lloyd, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Public Protection Services said, “Scams often target the most vulnerable people in society but the reality is that anyone can become a victim of scams. Scams damage lives and can affect people financially and emotionally so I’m proud that Ceredigion County Council has joined the work of the National Trading Standards Scams Team, Friends Against Scams and others who are working together to prevent people from being victims of scams. By signing up as an organisation we undertake to actively promote the Friends Against Scams initiative.”
Each year scams cause between £5bn and £10bn worth of detriment to UK consumers. In addition to the financial impact, scams can have a severe emotional and psychological impact on victims.
Louise Baxter, Team Manager in the National Trading Standards Scams Team said: “The tactics used by scammers leave victims socially isolated and ashamed of telling their friends and families what’s really going on behind closed doors. It is fantastic to have a great organisation to help us tackle this problem on a local, regional and national level and I would encourage all those that are interested in showing their support to join the campaign and be part of our growing Friends Against Scams network.”
Call by at the Bandstand, Aberystwyth on 27 September between 9:30am and 1:30pm to learn more on how to protect yourself from scams. For more information about becoming a Friend Against Scams, visitwww.friendsasagainstscams.org.uk
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