Tracy Brabin moves forward on plans to increase public control over West Yorkshire’s bus services

“I told the people of West Yorkshire that improving our buses through greater public control would be a priority and I am really excited that today, in my first week in office, I have started delivering on that commitment."

Tracy Brabin, the Mayor of West Yorkshire, has moved forward with plans to deliver greater public control of buses while unlocking millions of pounds in funding to improve services.

The Mayor today set out her intention to move forward with an Enhanced Bus Partnership while progressing work to enable the franchising of West Yorkshire’s bus services.

An Enhanced Bus Partnership will unlock a share of the £3bn the Government has made available to support bus services during the recovery from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

It will also give the West Yorkshire Combined Authority much greater control over how public money is used to support services, deliver deals on fares to help make travel more affordable and encourage more people to use buses, and improve the information available to passengers.

Speaking at an informal meeting of the Combined Authority’s Transport Committee, the Mayor also underlined her commitment to taking forward the work needed to go ahead with franchising bus services.

The Combined Authority has confirmed with the Government that an Enhanced Bus Partnership and the preliminary work towards franchising can be pursued in parallel.

Tracy Brabin, Mayor of West Yorkshire, said:

“I told the people of West Yorkshire that improving our buses through greater public control would be a priority and I am really excited that today, in my first week in office, I have started delivering on that commitment.

“I want us to make sure we are accessing the funding and the powers that are available to make improvements for passengers as quickly as possible.

“As someone taking the bus to work every day I share the frustrations of passengers in many of our communities and the course I’ve set today will give passengers a much stronger voice in the way services are run while unlocking funding to drive up standards.

“However, I am also clear incremental change is not enough and we will also be urgently progressing the detailed work that needs to be done to make the case for bus franchising.”