Laura Sharman 03 April 2020

Councils welcome £400m funding boost for bus services

Councils welcome £400m funding boost for bus services image

The Government has pledged nearly £400m funding to help keep bus services running during the coronavirus pandemic.

The funding package, agreed with bus operators, will see £167m paid over the next three months to keep key bus routes running. As a condition of the money, bus operators will need to maintain services at a level to meet reducing demand, while allowing space for passengers to practice self distancing.

This announcement is in addition to the £200m existing funding under the Bus Services Operators Grant, which will be paid as normal even if services aren’t running.

Local authorities will also have access to £30m to maintain existing services that was originally earmarked for starting new services.

Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, said: ‘This funding will provide a lifeline for those on the frontline as well as those who cannot work from home.

’Councils have also been encouraged to maintain their existing subsidies for concessionary fares to ensure that older and disabled people can still travel when they need to, for example to reach the shops, hospitals and doctors’ surgeries.’

Cllr David Renard, the Local Government Association’s transport spokesman, said: 'Bus operators must work with local authorities to ensure that this public subsidy is targeted at the people and places that depend on it the most.

'Councils now want to also work with government to provide financial support to those places which depend on other publicly-run mass transit systems, such as ferries, trams, light railway networks.'

Transport union TSSA said the Government should now go further and bring buses permanently into public ownership.

Manuel Cortes, TSSA general secretary, said: 'A publicly owned, truly integrated public transport can transform the way we travel and help tackle climate change for a cleaner future for all of us.'

For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Social Worker - D-BIT - under 10's team - Countywide

Essex County Council
£32065 - £43839 per annum + + 26 days annual leave & Local Gov Pension
Please note that this position is being offered on a Fixed Term Contract basis and is for a period of 15 months. This position is open to Newly Qua England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Family Centre Worker

Essex County Council
£21057 - £27391 per annum + + 25 days annual leave & Local Gov Pension
Family Centres The Family Centres in Essex County Council provide a range of interventions to bring about positive change within families, help adul England, Essex, Basildon
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Homeless Youth Specialist (Social Worker)

Essex County Council
£32065 - £43893 per annum + + Package
Homeless Youth Specialist (Social Worker)Permanent, Full Time£32,065 to £43,839 per annumLocation
Recuriter: Essex County Council

People Technology / HRIS Analyst

Essex County Council
Up to £42174 per annum
The Opportunity The People Technology / HRIS Analyst will be responsible for supporting the ongoing management of people-based technology including England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Principal Energy Engineer

Surrey County Council
£45,734 - £51,725 per annum
Do you have experience in working with delivering carbon reduction measures into a range of building projects? Surrey
Recuriter: Surrey County Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue