Helping disabled Londoners make the most of the Capital's extensive bus network is the philosophy behind a travel mentoring service that was rolled out in Sutton following successful trials.
The 'bus days', which provide disabled Londoners with the opportunity to experience independent travel on a London bus in a safe and controlled environment, are a collaboration between Transport for London (TfL), Sutton Community Transport, the Metropolitan Police Safer Transport Team and bus operator Go-Ahead - and are facilitated by an Innovation Grant from the London Borough of Sutton.
The new scheme in Sutton is one of eight similar projects already in place across the Capital.
Monthly sessions are planned, which are open to disabled individuals, disability groups and school groups of disabled students, which involve London bus following a pre-planned route around Sutton, starting in the town centre.
Passengers are able to get on and off the bus along the way and will be accompanied by TfL travel mentors and Metropolitan Police Safer Transport Teams.
The travel mentors will show participants how to use all the information at a bus stop - the routes, the bus numbers and local maps. Passengers are also shown how to board the bus and stay safe while on it. Wheelchair users are guided through using the ramp to get on the bus and their safety while travelling.
Police officers will also act out real life scenarios during the session that passengers may encounter on their journeys, both on the bus and on the street, and advise them how to handle these situations. This may include dealing with instances of anti-social behaviour or ticket inspections.