City regions respond to Government’s decision to extend funding for bus services until 2025

Bus passengers

The Urban Transport Group, the UK’s network of city region transport authorities, has responded to the Government’s decision to extend funding for bus services to 2025 and continue the national £2 fare cap until October, after which point, it will rise to £2.50 until the end of November 2024.

Government confirmed it will spend £300 million to ‘protect vital routes and improve services’ until 2025. Of this, £160 million will be provided to local transport authorities and £140 million will go directly to bus operators.

Rebecca Fuller, Interim Director at the Urban Transport Group, said:

“The Government’s decision to extend bus funding to 2025 offers a degree of longer-term certainty and brings to an end the stop-start approach that has dominated Government support for the bus since the pandemic.

“However, we are yet to learn the crucial details around how local transport authority funding will be shared across the country and the extent to which this will depend on past allocations, such as Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP) funding. It seems likely that there will be winners and losers from this announcement and we are keen to ensure that our urban areas have the funding they need to not only safeguard, but to also transform bus services as envisaged in the National Bus Strategy. To achieve this ambition, buses must do more than survive, they must be enabled to thrive.”