17 September 2012: We welcome the recommendation of the last Transport Committee report that aims to strengthen partnerships between local authorities and bus operators in places where bus services are poor, and to focus efforts on raising service standards and achieving a reliable and integrated service.
We agree that cooperative partnerships and regulatory reform can provide opportunities to offer better bus services to everyone. As the report points out, places like Oxford represent concrete examples of successful partnerships between operators, local authorities and bus passengers. There are no reasons why we should not replicate such successes. However, it is imperative that the Government does not deny people the opportunity to be better served by public transport by insisting on cuts that stem from short-term thinking.