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Title: Transport disadvantage in rural Northern Ireland
Author: Mackey, Scott.
Awarding Body: University of Ulster
Current Institution: Ulster University
Date of Award: 2005
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The aim of this research is to address the situation of transport disadvantage in Northern Ireland. The link. between transport disadvantage and social exclusion, namely the ability to access goods and services is a key public policy concern. Work in England and Scotland has identified the extent of the problem and some of the key patterns (DE~ 2000; Hine and Mitchell, 2001, 2003; Social Exclusion Unit, 2003). To date, limited research has been undertaken on this relationship in Northern Ireland. In 2000 the General Conswner Council (GCCNI) produced a short discussion document on transport disadvantage. This is problematic given the statements of concern in national transport strategy and planning docwnents (DRDNI, 1998, 2002). By and large, the relationship between transport and social exclusion is little understood by local authorities who are struggling to target resources at the problem (DETR, 1998). There is a clear need, therefore, to identify patterns of transport need. For the purposes of this thesis four case study areas at electoral ward level were selected. Focus group meetings and in-depth individual interviews within the rural community were carried out to explore the linkages between transport provision and lifestyle decisions. These were followed up by a target sample of 200 household surveys in each ward area, 200 secondary school surveys and 120 travel diary completions. The travel diaries have only been used in a supplementary capacity due to problems associated with incomplete returns. The key to detennining levels of transport disadvantage in the four case studies surrounded the link with gender, age group, level of household income and socioeconomic group. In this study, differences in travel experiences by gender were found to be minimal. Many females have access to a private car and are, thus accessing facilities, goods and services relatively easily. The issue of age group was found to be a more significant variable. While gender is not an issue, both males and females in the 25 to 59 age groups are the only groups who do not suffer in any way from transport disadvantage. lbis is due to the fact that the vast majority of respondents here are employed, own their own cars and are on relatively good household incomes. When younger and older respondents are considered, problems become more evident. The data presented shows that these groups are less likely to be able to drive or to have access to a private car, other than by relying on someone to give them lifts. These groups are also more liable to be on lower income levels resulting in less ability to buy and maintain their own transport, thus relying on public transport to meet their needs, something which proves problematic in the rural context.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available