Bus services across the UK were privatised in 1985. Since then, many routes in Kent have been run by commercial bus companies, such as Arriva or Stagecoach.
But not all of Kent’s bus services are run on a purely commercial basis. Kent County Council (KCC) currently spends £6.4 million subsidising some routes which, while not commercially viable, are considered important to the needs of the communities and passengers they serve.
KCC have worked hard to protect these subsidies, but as central government funds have been reduced we’ve had to make savings. They have already saved over £1million by working with bus operators to re-plan routes, renegotiating better contracts and through a greater use of Community Transport operators. However, they still need to reduce our spending further in the next financial year.
To help them do this a series of changes have been identified for 17 subsidised services. While KCC’s approach seeks to protect those bus services where the impact on passengers is greatest, they understand that any changes may have an adverse impact on existing bus passengers and they need you to tell them how the proposed changes may affect you. (more…)