West Berkshire Council

Community Minibus and Community Car Schemes

Find out about using the Community Minibus and Community Car Schemes

Image of a Handybus in West Berkshire

Community transport is the name given to not-for-profit, often volunteer-run groups that provide local passenger transport. They help West Berkshire residents, who may not have access to other forms of transport, get around our district.

Community transport groups are generally (but not exclusively) aimed at increasing the independence, mobility and peace of mind of older and disabled people. In some cases, West Berkshire makes a contribution to their running costs.

Find out about volunteering with a minibus or community car scheme online.

Types of Community Transport in West Berkshire

Community Car Schemes

Community Car Schemes are operated by volunteers that give up their own time, and use their own vehicles, to drive people to a variety of locations on a doorstep to doorstep basis. They are generally there to help older and mobility-impaired people who are unable to use public transport and who don't have their own means of getting around. They are used particularly when someone needs help to get to medical appointments.

They aren't taxi services and do require at least 48 hours notice if a journey is required. The schemes often require a small donation from passengers to help with running costs, but this should be agreed up front when you book.

When you would use a Community Car Scheme?

They are generally for short or medium trips on your own, or with a carer or relative, within West Berkshire or neighbouring counties. Typical bookings could include:

  • A visit to a GP, hospital or for other medical reasons
  • A shopping trip or to keep in touch with friends
  • A one-off trip when you are not able to catch a bus or a train to where you are going

Use our pdf icon Community Car Schemes leaflet [812kb], or the West Berkshire Directory, to find a scheme near you.

Community Minibus Schemes (Handybus) 

Community minibus operators arrange trips to support local communities. The schemes are mainly focused on helping older people and people with mobility impairments, but they can be booked by other groups or organisations. The services are provided by charitable organisations across West Berkshire.

The groups require a small donation to assist in the operation of their schemes, but should agree this up front at the time of booking.

Image of a Handybus driver with the bus in West Berkshire
Image of a Handybus driver with the bus in West Berkshire

When you would use a Minibus Scheme?

Usually, these are intended for organised trips along with other people. For example:

  • A trip to see a show or an event with others
  • A group trip to shopping locations
  • Sight-seeing trips or "days out"
  • Meeting new people and joining in
  • Going to support or therapy groups at the same time as others

Occasionally, individual bookings are taken, but it is subject to availability.

Use our pdf icon Community Car Schemes leaflet [812kb], or the West Berkshire Directory, to find a scheme near you.

ReadiBus have notified West Berkshire Council that they will shortly be ceasing their transport operations in Newbury and Thatcham. The Community Transport leaflet is in the process of being updated to reflect this information.

    Who To Contact