ANGER has erupted among passengers after news broke that long-established combined bus and tram tickets in Nottingham are to be scrapped.
Up to 11,000 commuters and shoppers in Hucknall, Bulwell and the rest of the city have weekly, monthly or annual Easyrider passes that allow them to hop on and off the tram network and Nottingham City Transport (NCT) buses.
Cityrider tickets, at a cost of £3.40, can also be bought to offer the same privilege for one day.
But legal technicalities mean the offers will have to be axed when a consortium, which includes Trent Barton buses, takes over the Hucknall-to-Nottingham tram line from Arrow Light Rail.
The forced changes are due to the tightening of government competition rules.
The aim is to prevent one company, for example NCT, owning a monopoly by selling joint tram and bus tickets.
David Thornhill, chairman of Nottinghamshire Campaign for Better Transport, said: “That a major European city will not have its tram network integrated with its main city bus company is complete madness.” (SEE YOUR OPINIONS, page 4)
But Coun Jane Urquhart (Lab), lead member for transport at Nottingham City Council, insisted: “We were aware the existing arrangement was coming to an end and did all we could to see how it could continue.”
Still available will be the Kangaroo ticket, which covers different bus networks, the tram and some trains. But it is more expensive.
Nottingham City Council is set to make an announcement on the date when the new consortium will take over.
Tram and bus Cityrider tickets will no longer be available the day after. Easyrider passes will become void seven days after the changeover. Anyone who has paid in advance is entitled to a refund.