Lack of support spells end for St Albans green travel scheme

PUBLISHED: 19:04 30 October 2009 | UPDATED: 14:36 06 May 2010

A GREENER way to travel has failed to survive in St Albans. The City Car Club allows people to drive on a pay-as-you-go basis with the aim of saving people money and helping the environment. Cars are dotted around cities in useful locations and members s

A GREENER way to travel has failed to survive in St Albans.

The City Car Club allows people to drive on a pay-as-you-go basis with the aim of saving people money and helping the environment.

Cars are dotted around cities in useful locations and members simply book online or by phone to hire the vehicle parked nearest to them.

Commercial manager Keith Kelly said: "This form of community-based driving attracts people for two reasons: financial and environmental."

But lack of support for the service in St Albans means it cannot be sustained. City Car Club say tough market conditions have forced the company to stop operations which will come to an end next Friday, November 6.

Mr Kelly added: "St Albans was not ready. You need a high proportion of people who do not need a car, and a lifestyle and community framework to support it."

The end of operations is part of wider national closures but it signals the second time a company running this kind of service has shut in St Albans.

About 200 people from St Albans signed up to the service which had six vehicles in five locations.

City Car Club said they had contacted all St Albans members, informing them of the situation and offering a pro-rata refund on any membership fees already paid for if they wished to cancel.

St Albans customer Phil Yorke said: "It is a shame, it was a really good service and it was more useful and cheaper than owning a car."

Mr Yorke, who used the car club about once a month, felt there was not enough advertising for the service.

City Car Club is trying to make arrangements for another service to take over in St Albans but has not yet been successful.

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