The organisation representing bus passengers has launched its 2020 Manifesto highlighting that buses are increasingly being recognised as the solution to many of the country’s most pressing social, economic and environmental problems.

Available via bususers.org/operators/resources, the Bus Users’ Manifesto argues that, whoever forms the next Government, the UK needs a national bus strategy aligned and equal to strategies for rail, road, walking and cycling.

It calls for a change to the wording of Section 63 of the 1985 Transport Act so that local authorities have a duty to provide socially necessary transport for the communities they serve, along with sufficient, ring-fenced funding for the purpose.

Bus Users Chief Executive, Claire Walters, said: “It is no longer simply enough to call for more funding. What we need now is a radical re-think of transport that actively discourages private car use and places affordable, accessible and integrated public transport at the heart of policy planning.”

The Manifesto suggests a cross-departmental approach to transport planning nationally and locally across the UK.

This should coordinate policy on education, employment, the environment, health, housing and the economy, along with Treasury involvement, to make public transport a core element of all planning.

Bus Users also calls for local partnership working to be made a requirement between local authorities and bus operators of every kind and for the creation of a simple framework for non-profit services to work easily and cost-efficiently within the local transport plan.

“Communities need access to late-running and weekend services to reflect changing working patterns, particularly among low paid and entry level jobs,” the Manifesto concludes.

Last reviewed 10 December 2019