Students help Derbyshire residents change travel habits

10 October 2016

Students at the University of Derby are helping to transform the way people travel around Buxton and other Derbyshire market towns.

Tourism students at the Buxton Campus are working in partnership with Derbyshire County Council and Buxton Town Team to survey transport habits among locals, commuters and visitors in the next few weeks.

They will use the data to come up with ideas which will encourage people to engage in active and sustainable travel – by walking, cycling, using public transport and electric cars.

Traffic in Buxton

The research will be used as a model for other transport projects if the County Council’s £1.5 million bid for Government cash to promote active and sustainable transport to create a healthier, safer and greener Derbyshire is successful.

Councillor Dean Collins, Derbyshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways, Transport and Infrastructure, said: “The students will be talking to local people to find out what would encourage them to leave the car at home and switch to other forms of transport.

“We’re not anti-car but as car usage continues to rise we need to look for alternatives to prevent our roads from becoming overly congested in the future as well as to protect the environment.

“A key part of this work is finding out what puts people off changing the way they travel. Is it cost, convenience or something else? And that’s what the University of Derby aims to find out.”

The Town Team has become involved after a conference they held on transport issues at the University’s Buxton Campus highlighted the need for research and fresh ideas, which the students have now been asked to supply.

Town Team spokesman John Phillips said “The conference was held earlier in the year to highlight the positive impact that the opening of the historic Crescent as a five-star hotel, and other developments in town, will have on Buxton in the near future.”

“The idea was to encourage key stakeholders to work together to plan for the higher numbers of people who will visit. We want to ensure that Buxton keeps moving and very much welcome the enthusiasm of the Destination Management students who are helping to get the ball rolling.”