ALTON’S community bus, which offers an invaluable service to those living in the Eastbrooke and Wooteys area of town, has received a welcome sponsorship boost from Martin Grant Homes.

Currently building 137 new homes at Maple Fields – part of the Cadnams Farm development in Upper Anstey Lane – Martin Grant Homes has donated £500 to cover the cost of running the community bus service for two months.

The service, which is run as a charity dependent on donations, is vital for users who can no longer drive or don’t have cars – as well as those wishing to be climate aware and leave their cars at home.

The bus runs on a Saturday and its route encompasses two large supermarkets and the town centre.

Describing it as “a fantastic initiative,” Chris Hamilton, the managing director of Martin Grant Homes, said: “We are committed to supporting the communities in which we build, and we are proud to support the community bus project for the next couple of months, thanks to our work at Maple Fields.”

As well as providing a free transport service to community members, the charity also offers a phone service to check on the well-being of their regular users.

Eastbrooke ward councillor Paula Langley, who has driven the bus herself, said: “Many local residents had been left totally isolated when commercial bus routes were halted to this area of Alton.

“The bus is about so much more than getting from A to B – it has become a way of reducing social isolation and creating community.

“Without our sponsors we just couldn’t run.”