asked the Secretary of State for Transport what change in the cost of London Regional Transport services has occurred since the Government assumed responsibility from the Greater London council.
The chairman of LRT in 1984 was given the objective of reducing the level of revenue support from ratepayers and taxpayers to £95 million in 1987–88. The last plans to be made by the GLC for London Transport had revenue subsidy rising to £245 million in 1987–88. In fact, the corporation succeeded in reducing revenue support to £97 million in 1985–86, thus almost achieving the objective two years early. The continuing reduction in revenue support this year and next will allow the burden of London's ratepayers to be reduced by £55 million in two years, and at the same time an increase in investment to a record £280 million.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport what is the current level of demand for London Regional Transport underground services; and if he will make a statement.
London Regional Transport estimates that 3,880 million passenger miles will be travelled on the underground during 1986–87. The corresponding figure for the last full year during which the GLC controlled London Transport was 2,700 million passenger miles. This year's figure is another all-time record and I congratulate the corporation on its continued success in attracting passengers to use its services.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport what transport services are currently being provided by London Regional Transport for disabled people.
In addition to its growing network of wheelchair-accessible mobility buses, LRT has recently announced its decision to adapt the fleet of Airbus vehicles to enable them to carry wheelchair-bound passengers between central London and Heathrow airport. An accessible minibus service to and from the airport is being provided meanwhile, together with a service linking the main line stations. LRT has increased by 20 per cent. the funding available for borough-based dial-a-ride schemes in London, which have a steadily rising membership. It continues to administer the London taxicard scheme on behalf of participating boroughs. LRT is also undertaking a major programme to improve access for elderly and ambulant disabled people to their conventional buses. All these developments show clearly the increasing regard being given to the transport needs of disabled people in London.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport what changes have been made to concessionary travel arrangements for the elderly and disabled in Greater London since the Government assumed responsibility for London Regional Transport.
All 33 London local authorities have agreed to participate in a voluntary scheme in 1986–87 and 1987–88 which offers free travel for the elderly and disabled on all LRT services except before 9 am on weekdays, as under the former GLC scheme. The London Regional Transport Act 1984 guarantees the continued availability of a free travel scheme in London in the absence of voluntary agreement between the local authorities. This is in stark contrast to the scaremongering which took place when the Government assumed responsibility for London Regional Transport, and before the abolition of the GLC.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport what increase in London Regional Transport fares there has been since the Government assumed responsibility from the Greater London council.
LRT fares have been held broadly in line with inflation and below the general movement in wages. The latest fares revision on 11 January 1987 increased fares in real terms by an average of ½ per cent., maintaining real fares broadly at their level following the last fares change by London Transport under GLC control.
asked the Secretary of State for Transport what is the current level of demand for London Regional Transport bus services; and if he will make a statement.
London Regional Transport estimates that 2,700 million passenger miles will be travelled on its bus services during 1986–87. The corresponding figure for the last full year during which the GLC controlled London Transport was 2,440 million passenger miles. This year's figure is the highest since 1978, a particularly praiseworthy achievement when seen against the long-term general decline in demand for bus services in Britain.