TravelWatch SouthWest


What might lie ahead for public transport?

  • You can access a series of TWSW peer reviewed essays CONTEMPLATING THE FUTURE HERE
  • Find opportunities to: engage, model, and learn through coming events and consultations in the KEEPING THE CONNECTION DIARY (coming soon and feel free to email with your diary updates)
  • It will be possible for Members to CONTINUE TO LEARN FROM OTHER PLACES other places as TWSW provide s a red tape free link to our European neighbours through the EPF (European Passengers Federation)
  • Can we expect  DISRUPTED JOURNEYS and how will it be handled?  (we plan to put an interactive map out soon)
  • Will planning for public transport help deliver the behaviour change needed to save us from global warming; deliver clean air; and make us fitter?
  • We must take a joined up approach

Livening up Lockdown

TWSW  a 2nd series of “Fireside Chats” in 6 webinars at 3.30 on Friday afternoons

As policymakers develop strategies are being which may be implemented without the opportunity for live debate. We are taking advantage of the anticipated lockdown to revive our popular series and ensure your thoughts are available to decision makers.

Registration for each of these sessions is essential

Series 2   

Next Fireside Chat 3.30 Friday 12 February

Tickets HERE  

Fireside Chats held since the start of this series:

Webinar 13.30 pm 15th  January 2021 Realising a vision

Webinar 2 3.30 pm Friday 22nd January 2021

Slides & Resources

Webinar 3 3.30 pm  Friday 29th January 2021 Town Centres 

Webinar 4 3.30 pm Friday 5th February  Rural Connectivity

  •  Seminar background reading, chat, and summary of chat points at
    That is a permanent link with all the links that people gave “clickable”.
  • We are running through the Government “Call for Evidence” with Members online on Tuesday 9th at 3 pm.  Friday attendees will receive the codes from Eventbrite

Webinar 5 3.30 pm  Friday 12th  .February Best Practice

Webinar 6 3.30 pm 19th February 



The Link below reveals the Notice of TWSW’s AGM 3rd December 2021 at 11 am.  This is an online meeting for open for   member organisations only to participate in conducting the formalities for the CIC.

TWSW AGM Agenda 3rd December 2021 


We must shift to public transport to avoid catastrophic climate change, ill health, and levels of congestion which bring us to a standstill.  Users must be engaged with in developing strategy to develop behaviour changes which support constructive policies to bring about a new normal.  COVID brings an opportunity to accelerate change for better or worse.


Take heed of special measures imposed from time to time during the pandemic.

Safety measures imposed on public transport around the world since COVID-19 hit have made them “the safest places on earth”, Dr Julian Tang, a professor of respiratory sciences at Leicester University, told Sky News.

He said if people took the same precautions in other high-risk areas such as crowded streets and pubs, the number of cases would reduce there.

Read the research, apply common sense, take appropriate precautions, think of others, and have confidence that the industry is taking user safety very seriously.

Remember ventilation is important, good hygiene essential, and that face coverings are mandatory on public transport unless you falling to a category where exemptions apply.   If you are a campaigning group or  transport advocate, please advise all your members of this, but also reassure communities that there are remarkable measures in place to keep vehicles clean and monitor use.   

As of 16th July 2020, official advise is no longer to use public transport only as a “last resort”, but rather to start making use of it again, all be that it a very different way. . Initial advice ((here)) – from SWR – further page to follow.

TravelWatch SouthWest (TWSW) is a social enterprise company which acts as an advocate for passengers to lobby for the improvement of public transport in the region and works closely with local authorities, business organisations, partnerships and other stakeholder groups. With the dissolution of the former Rail Passengers Committee for Western England in July 2005, TWSW is the representative body for public transport users throughout the South West of England.

This is the start of society “acting as we mean to go on”, operators are recognising some behavioural changes afoot, presenting stakeholders with an enormous opportunity to contribute to a successfully remodelled network for journeys.

As an organisation that co-ordinates stakeholder and community groups across the South West, we encourage you to use electronic means to stay in touch over coming weeks and months, examining the transport deal which would bring the most social/environmental/economic benefit for the groups you represent.

Our General Meeting will be held ONLINE in  2021

Please see more on our General Meetings page for further updates.

During the interim, we are continuing with our webinars by moving to a “pop up series”, reflecting the need for versatility  and accord with rapid policy announcement.

Just as intermediate meetings in real life have been replaced by online (Zoom) meetings each week. You may find notes and user inputs from meetings that have already happened via the links below

8th May 2020 – Should we give up on the community ambition for better public transport, and what does “better” mean in the current climate?  Could COVID-19 be a catalyst for behavioural shift and a better passenger transport experience?

15th May 2020 – Planning for restart and taking the opportunity for lasting change

22nd May 2020 – In this week’s webinar we focused on links between public transport and health, as we continue agenda building and aligning Users’ needs with Government Minister Grant Shapps MP’s declared aspirations.

29th May 2020 – In this week’s webinar we focused on finding and delivering in-city solutions to the integral problems with current connectivity.

5th June 2020 – Linking Shared and Sustainable Transport.  There is broad agreement that alternative transport network must be seamless to usurp the car. But how?

12th June 2020 – What will be community rail’s role after covid19?  “Community and rail” or “Community Rail” or “Community and sustainable transport”?  How can our community members, groupings and organisations best partner forward?


Previous General Meeting: Monday 2nd March 2020

Our line-up includes National Express, SNAP and GWR

TWSW GM March 2020- Agenda for 2 March 2020

Our most recent General Meeting took place in Taunton on Friday 18 October and was sold out! 

The engagement stimulated a constructive exchange of ideas and recognition of common ground enabling TWSW produce a list of key priorities  for passengers and communities  in the South West.

Sponsored coaches to the venue

Our last Spring General Meeting Wednesday on 20 March 2019 welcomed over 100 attendees.   Giles Fearnley from First Group, Managing Director of First Bus UK, delivered Keynote address which signposted some simple measures which could deliver better service to passengers and tackle climate change.  The need for collaborative working could not be clearer.
The agenda and presentation slides from the day can be found through the links below.

We have moved the meeting from our usual weekend date to  grow our audience encouraging, carers for the young, industry and local authority representatives to come along.

All member groups are encouraged to send a representative to this meeting and additionally to send a second representative to represent their younger members as these will reap the benefit (or suffer the consequences) of decisions made and projects implemented in the next few years.

TravelWatch also welcomes representatives of groups who are not currently members, and representatives of public transport organisations and local and central government. Interested individuals not linked to represented groups are also welcome – please contact the secretary for an invite.

Some previous “Special Topic” Meetings

On 16 December 2019 TWSW hosted  Network Rail in Bridgwater for a conversation addressing local issues and frustrations to “one journey”.  TravelWatch SouthWest Chaired the meeting where the constructive approach of attendee User’s groups, Local Government representatives, SWLEP, Sub Transport Bodies, and Public Transport Operators produced discussions which were constructive.  An exciting announcement is expected by Easter.

TWSW CrossCountry Franchise Consultation Meeting – 22 June 2018 in Taunton. Around 40 member organisations met; listened to the Department for Transport’s overview of the next Cross Country franchise and how the consultation can help them, and then the consultation and questions therein were discussed one by one around the room. A most useful day to help each member group be informed to formulate their reply, and to inform the TravelWatch board for the TWSW response which is in preparation. Slides / presentations from the meeting are available via our meetings page

The TWSW Great Western Franchise Map and Direct Award Consultation Meeting held on Monday 15th January 2018 at the Council Chamber Exeter enabled Stakeholders to highlight passenger aspiration and needs for the future to the Department for Transport within the context of the Consultation. Read the TWSW Great Western Map and Direct Award Consultation response

The tab below provides links to presentations from the last General Meeting

General Meetings →

Register with us for the webinar "Pop-up Sessions" by following us on Facebook and Eventbrite