Mayor responds to future Government bus funding

Mayor of West Yorkshire responds to a recent report by the Urban Transport Group that up to 300 million bus journeys could be scrapped if Government do not continue with funding.

Responding to the news that nearly one in three urban bus trips could be lost without further financial support from Government, Tracy Brabin, Mayor of West Yorkshire, said: 

“I’ve been raising this issue with government for months, and have spoken candidly with Ministers about the bus services in our region that are under threat. It’s very disappointing to see that there is still no decision on whether bus operators will continue to receive financial support from April.  

“Fewer people than usual are using buses at the moment, but as they return to their workplaces they’re finding routes cut and frequencies reduced. For those people who rely on our bus network, this is the very opposite of levelling up. 

“Some smaller bus companies are also at risk of going out of business while others have said they may have to cut services further if funding cannot be secured from April 2022. The Combined Authority is able to financially support some of these services but there’s a limit to what we can do. 

“In West Yorkshire we’ve put in bids for future funding as part of the government’s Bus Back Better programme – but we’re in danger of not having services to support when that funding arrives. 

“The government need to hear our concerns and act fast.” 

Government’s financial support for the bus (in England outside the capital), which has allowed transport authorities and bus operators to keep services running, is due to expire on 5 April 2022.

Source: Continuing COVID Funding Support for Urban Public Transport (Continuing COVID Funding Support for Urban Public Transport | URBAN TRANSPORT GROUP)