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£3bn bus boost - expert comment

Professor Mike Waterson of the Department of Economics comments:

"Broadly, this announcement is to be welcomed; the current bus system is delivering declining numbers of services to a smaller group of people and needs to change. However, the funding promised seems to me to be very small compared with the ambition expressed.

"The strategy suggests 4000 new buses will be supplied, but this is one-eighth of the total number of buses in service on UK roads. Of the 32,000 buses on the roads, approximately 2000 will be scrapped each year. So, the 4000 buses promised will cost over £1.5bn, given that they will be electric or hydrogen, and only add two years' worth of new supply.

"This also means over half of the funds on offer will be for the buses themselves, leaving relatively little for other features of the plan. Local authorities will I am sure want to assist, but they are very strapped for funds and they will need to prioritise competing uses such as adult social care."

15 March 2021


Sheila Kiggins

Media Relations Manager

07876 218166