Council welcomes decision to bring buses back under public control

Thursday, March 14, 2024

The historic decision to bring buses in West Yorkshire back under public control has been welcomed by a senior Wakefield Councillor.

Earlier today West Yorkshire Mayor Tracey Brabin made an announcement that will see fares, routes and timetables for buses in the region set by the West Yorkshire Combined Authority. Private operators will then be contracted to run services on the Combined Authority’s behalf.

The move will mean our bus network is not run in the interests of private companies, but in the interest of the tens of thousands of passengers in Wakefield district and across West Yorkshire.

Public control will improve service quality, with consistent customer standards, will mean a more integrated network, including with standardised ticketing, and will mean greener, improved buses.

"The Mayor’s bus reform has our full backing. It will deliver the change we so desperately need. So this is a positive step in bringing about better services and having a public transport system we can all be proud of.

“We know that change won’t happen overnight. But It was heartening to hear the Mayor’s determination to get cracking on this.

"As we drive these changes forward, the transition needs to be supported by bus operators continuing to improve their current offer. Today’s announcement is hugely welcome and very positive for our district.”

Cllr Matthew Morley

Cabinet Member for Planning and Highways

Cllr Matthew Morley

Simon Lightwood, Wakefield MP and Shadow Local Transport Minister, said: “It’s fantastic to see trailblazing Labour mayors leading the way and improving their local bus networks. Today’s decision will revolutionise bus services across West Yorkshire by handing power over routes, fares and service quality back where it belongs – in the hands of the community.”


A recent survey of bus passengers by Transport Focus ranked Arriva in West Yorkshire as the worst bus operator in the UK, out of 55 bus operators.


The Mayor’s decision follows an extensive assessment and a public consultation on bus services in West Yorkshire.

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