Passenger Voice November 2015: Buses Bill workshops

30 October 2015

Bus passengers could have a very different service if a new bill is to come into force. The ‘buses bill’ would allow local authorities to franchise their bus networks. Could this be one of the most significant reforms of how buses are run since deregulation in 1986?

The Department for Transport (DfT) has now completed a series of seven workshops to discuss these changes to bus services.

The workshops were set up to:

  • inform stakeholders of timescales for the proposed buses bill
  • communicate general principles of a franchising model
  • look at options for developing partnership models
  • listen to stakeholders views on all proposals.

We were invited to take part and used the opportunity to remind both the industry and the DfT of the importance of passengers in this process. We also gave examples of what our research tells us that passengers want. It is vital that whatever process is put in place, it delivers what we know passengers need.

You can read more about the buses bill in the Queens Speech here (page 100). 

The DfT said it would considering a broad range of opinions on both partnership and franchising models. Attendees took part in groups covering these two models in detail, as well as one to discuss ticketing, open data and regulation.

Stephen Fidler, DfTHead of Buses and Taxis said that the workshops had been very useful and each one had given the DfT new information to consider.

All the presentations from the workshops can be viewed on the DfT website here.


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