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Bus Services: Concessions

Volume 475: debated on Tuesday 6 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what percentage of national concessionary bus fares scheme passes applied for have been issued; and what percentage of the eligible population have applied for such passes. (202738)

Responsibility for producing and issuing passes for the England-wide bus concession lies with local Travel Concession Authorities (mainly District Councils, non-metropolitan Unitaries and the Passenger Transport Executives). As such the Department for Transport does not hold information on the number of applications received. We do, however, have an estimate of the number of passes that suppliers expected to have to produce for local authorities in England outside London.

By 1 April 2008, suppliers had produced 95 per cent. of the passes they expected to have to produce and had sent out over 80 per cent. to concessionaires. By 8 April, this had increased to 99 per cent. produced and sent out.

In respect of eligibility, we estimate that around 11 million people in England are eligible for concessionary travel passes. By 8 April, around 6 million people outside London had applied for and received a new pass.

In London, concessionaires who already have a pass do not need a new one, but need to have their existing pass re-stickered to show that they are eligible for the new England-wide concession. Around 800,000 people in London have had their passes re-stickered or (if they are a new applicant) received a new pass.