Group of men put the wheels in motion for a new community taxi service


A new minibus taxi service is set to be launched after a group of men oiled the wheels of the idea during a night out at a local pub.

Chartered surveyor Jonathan Mack was among 10 men who got together for an evening at The Wisborough pub in Wisborough Green and hit on the idea of a community bus.

It followed discussions about the massive taxi costs of relatively short rural journeys - and the idea took off there and then when Jonathan’s partner Jo Newman launched a Facebook campaign. More than £1,000 was raised within 24 hours.

Wisborough landlord Paul Gidley organised the night out for the men - none of whom knew each other - after a similar evening for women went with a bang, despite one of them going into labour during dinner.

Paul said: “It was a great dinner and all the chaps got on extremely well. The conversation turned to travel and Jonathan said ‘do you know it costs me £40 each way to get to the pub’ and all the chaps were talking about it.”

Jonathan, 27, who lives in West Chiltington, said it was an important issue for people living in rural places and suggested the group form a club and run their own minibus.

His partner Jo immediately launched a Facebook crowdfunding appeal - and the ‘club’ are now on their way to buying an 18-seater minibus which will be bought by an expert from the dinner group and run by them.

They are planning club days out to a number of major events such as Hickstead and Goodwood, as well as those further afield.

Anyone who wants to find out more, or join the club, can contact them on the Facebook page ‘Wanna get to the Wisborough’.

Meanwhile, the Wisborough is staging a special St George’s Day event - ‘The Crafty Lager and Beer Party’ - at The Wisborough on April 23 in aid of the Dame Vera Lynn Childrenn’s Charity. It promises fun and live music.

And a special Champagne event is being held at the pub as part of the Wisborough Classic Car Show, promoted by Champagne Jacquart, on May 21 at 1pm.