Campaign for more bus cash

County chiefs are backing a national campaign calling for more government cash to run their free bus pass scheme.

With the issue of rural buses being debated by MPs at Westminster this week, the Fair Fares campaign has been launched by Norfolk County Council.

Like Norfolk, Devon County Council has been left with a near �5m blackhole and is also urging Whitehall to look again at proposals to reduce grants to bus operators next year.

They say that rural bus services could be put at further risk by proposed government spending reductions in the next financial year.

Councillor Stuart Hughes, the county’s transport boss, said: “We have faced additional pressure on all of our services since responsibility for the free national bus pass fell to us in April.

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“While Devon is fully supportive of the concessionary bus scheme, government funding left us with a massive shortfall, forcing additional pressure on all services supported by the county council.

“Any further Government cuts would be more problematic and would have a much bigger impact on bus services.”

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