A number of constituents have sent me postcards as part of the TUC Midlands’ campaign about the national bus pass.
Ensuring elderly and disabled people can continue to benefit from free off-peak bus travel should be a key priority for the Government and I therefore welcome that Ministers have amended legislation in order to protect the free bus travel scheme. Specifically, the need to review the scheme every five years has been removed.
By ensuring the scheme is protected for years to come, the Government has also ensured that elderly and disabled people can remain connected with their towns and cities. It has also given those who make use of free bus travel have the certainty they deserve.
In addition to the substantial investment in the bus pass scheme, the Government provides around £250 million a year in England directly for bus services, which reflects very clearly the Government’s commitment to bus passengers. As the MP for a rural constituency I am particularly pleased that £40 million of this funding ensures the bus routes which may not be commercially viable but are deemed to be socially necessary, receive funding.