Go-Ahead welcomes continuing government support for bus services in England

Go-Ahead today welcomes the announcement from the Department for Transport (DfT) regarding extended funding of bus services in England, to be provided by the UK Government. 

In its statement issued on Saturday 8 August, the DfT announced a further eight-week £218.4m funding package, following which weekly funding of up to £27.3m will be available until such a time as funding is no longer required. This announcement reaffirms the Government’s commitment to preserving the bus network for the long term and protects the vital bus services upon which so many people rely.

Alongside the funding announcement, the Government announced plans to publish a National Bus Strategy, to set out how it plans to support a sustainable future for bus services across the country. The Government is also actively working on ways to ensure the bus sector can operate independently and be commercially viable. 

Go-Ahead CEO, David Brown, said: 

“As communities return to work, services reopen and people begin travelling again, we are seeing customers returning to public transport.  However, passenger numbers are still below 50% of pre-COVID levels across our networks.  While social distancing is in place and sections of society remain closed, we welcome the Government’s continued support to keeping these critical services running. 

“With enhanced cleaning of our buses, mandatory wearing of face coverings, and guidance on social distancing and hygiene, customers can travel safely and with confidence on our services.”

 

ENDS

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Go-Ahead

Go-Ahead is one of the leading UK public transport operator companies.  Our purpose is to be the local partner taking care of journeys that enhance the lives and wellbeing of our communities across the world.  Employing around 30,000 people across our businesses, over 1.2 billion passenger journeys are undertaken on our rail and bus services every year. In addition to the travelling public, our customers include governments and local authorities. We are committed to contributing to tackling climate change, improving air quality and reducing social isolation, and aim to run a zero emission bus fleet by 2035. 

Bus

Go-Ahead is one of the UK's largest bus operators. With a fleet of nearly 6,000 buses, we carry over two million passengers every day. We have a strong presence in London, with around 23 per cent market share, where we provide regulated services for Transport for London. Outside London, we principally serve high-density commuter markets, including the North East, Greater Manchester, East Yorkshire, East Anglia, South East and South West England. Internationally, we operate a bus contract in Singapore and two bus contracts in Ireland.

Rail

The rail division operates two franchises in the UK, three contracts in Germany and one in Norway. In the UK, Southeastern and GTR (Govia Thameslink Railway) operate through our 65% owned subsidiary, Govia, which is 35% owned by Keolis. It is the largest rail operation in the UK, responsible for around 30 per cent of all UK passenger rail journeys through its rail franchises. In Germany and Norway, our contracts are run exclusively by Go-Ahead.