Brent Community Transport – Community Transport Christmas
by Rama Bhudia
Operations and Bookings Assistant, Brent CT
At Brent Community Transport, we provide transport for older and disabled residents in our borough. Radios and TVs are often all that older people have to keep them company these days and our hope is that we can reduce this isolation, helping them get out and about, talk to people and have fun. They’re the ones who’ve made us who we are, and it’s us who need to give them respect and support.
Every year, around the second and third week of December, we arrange to take some of our passengers to see the festive lights in Central London. It’s a very popular trip; we get requests for seats as far back as August! We have different group of people going every year and no two Christmas trips are the same. The journey helps to put a smile on their faces. Just a little talking and seeing new places helps to cheer people up! In some cases, we’ve had passengers who won’t let go off our hands, wanting to stay on the bus because they’ve had so much fun! It’s a great feeling that we are doing something for the community.
We have the festive music on in the buses, the decorations go up, and Santa, our driver, is always ready to fire up the engine for the sleigh to be pulled along the famous roads of London! Our elves, (passenger assistants) are on hand to entertain and we provide crackers, a small gift and light refreshment as passengers are wowed by the amazing lights of Knightsbridge, Harrods, Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square, Regent Street, Oxford Street and not to mention Winter Wonder Land on Park Lane! We sing festive songs and all join in happily.
Christmas is a family time and many of our passengers have no one to share it with. We help by taking them out so they can be in a different environment, with friends and smiling faces – even if it is only for a short period!
Through our Christmas trips, we help our passengers to have a good time, be happy and feel part of the community as we take them out for the evening. It creates opportunities for them to meet other people and socialise during their journey in the bus, helping them see the city at Christmas as they may have done many years ago.
Community Transport Association UK is a charitable company limited by guarantee. Registered in Cardiff no. 1985361 Registered office: 12 Hilton Street M1 1JF. Registered as a charity in England and Wales no. 1002222. Charity Registered in Scotland No. SC038518.