£10 million to keep free bus-passes on the right road

ELDERLY and disabled passengers in Hucknall are celebrating news that almost £10 million has been secured to continue a free bus-pass scheme.

The government has provided £9.27 million to allow free travel for those with a pass between 9.30 am and 11 pm on weekdays and all day at weekends and on Bank Holidays.

And cash-strapped Notts County Council has agreed to fund £460,000 to preserve extra benefits for Nottinghamshire residents.

This money will mean free bus travel for companions of disabled passengers and free off-peak travel on trams for pass-holders.

The cash has been earmarked even though the county council needs to make cuts that amount to more than £150 million over three years.

Coun Richard Jackson (Con), lead member for transport, said: “Despite the financial pressures we are under at the moment, we have safeguarded the money to continue the additional entitlements.

“This means that companions of disabled people who, in some cases, are essential for them to be physically able to use public transport, will still be able to travel for free.

“Our scheme offers a generous entitlement while not being a burden to the council-tax payer.”