West Berkshire Council

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Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Find information about community support and our services during the coronavirus pandemic, on our information for residents pages, our information for businesses pages, and our community support hub page which has guidance to help coordinate community organisations.

See a summary of our Local Outbreak Control Plan and read our frequently asked questions. 

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

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

Community transport takes two forms 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 aren't taxi services and do require at least 48 hours notice if a journey is required. 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're used particularly when someone needs help to get to medical appointments. 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're not able to catch a bus or a train to where you're going

Find a scheme near you with our pdf icon Community Car Schemes leaflet [812kb], or using the West Berkshire Directory.

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.

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 support or therapy groups at the same time as others

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

Find a scheme near you with our pdf icon Community Car Schemes leaflet [812kb], or using the West Berkshire Directory. 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.

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


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