Saturday, February 8, 2014

Some Bad News Affecting Me

As I was travelling on the train to Sheffield last night it was announced that as from April I won't be able to travel for free on the trains within South Yorkshire; my pass would only be valid on buses.

This is really bad news for me because it means that it will be much more difficult for me to reach the Peak District. It takes about 25-35 minutes to travel on the train to Sheffield, plus the bus ride into the Peak District, but travelling on the bus to Sheffield takes 75 minutes and so it makes a day out walking very difficult for me. I'll still be able to reach some parts of the Peak District and adjacent areas by catching the bus to Barnsley, but these aren't my preferred areas to visit, and it's a limited geographical area to explore. 

At the moment my travel pass is also valid for free travel to Leeds and Wakefield on the train. I have a budget for theatre trips allocated to me by Social Services and I regularly travel into West Yorkshire to visit the theatre...and to attend a social group for people with Asperger's syndrome. It costs about £12 to travel to Leeds on the train and I certainly can't afford that, maybe twice or three times a month.

My life has been ruined; unless there's some way for me to reclaim travelling expenses when I go walking or visit the theatre I will end up totally isolated and pretty much social activities will be limited to going on local walks which I can reach on the bus.


  1. I'm really sorry to hear this Lee. Can you get any kind of discount on train tickets instead? It may seem like life is ruined at the moment, and I realise this is a big thing to lose, but things generally never work out as bad as we first think so maybe you'll discover more or new things closer to home or maybe you'll find out that you can claim something back as expenses or find other ways of travelling. I hope things will work out ok and that you can make the most of your train travel while you still have it.

  2. Lee, I've just discovered your blog, I too really enjoy going out into the Peak District. I'm a student at the University of Sheffield, so I don't have a car, without the public transport into the Peaks I wouldn't be able to go out and enjoy them. I'm really sorry to hear this news, I hope you get something sorted out. Stay positive, make the most of the trains whilst you have them, the days are getting longer as well, so hopefully you'll be able to do some good long walks before the 1st April :)

  3. Hi Lee, I agree with Louise. Don't lose heart. Do you know anybody who usually drives to these things that might offer you a lift for a couple of quid? We have joined a very lovely walking group from the Dearne Valley and they travel to do some great walks - they also offer lifts to people with no transport. email me at if you need any details. Can you apply for a grant or something from the Aspergers Society or mention your plight to Social Services ? A social life it vital for you.

  4. Hello Louise and Diane, and welcome to the blog David. I might be able to persuade Social Services to refund my travel expenses; I'll be phoning them up tomorrow and will remind them that they have a duty to care towards me because of my Asperger's just the same as the NHS has a duty of care to people with mental health problems. Walking in the Peak District is my therapy; other people aren't being denied their therapy so it's unfair for me to be denied mine - it's also a lot cheaper than medication or having to see a therapists or psychistrist.

  5. Good luck with sorting this out Lee, hope you are able to continue exploring the Peaks!