Great value bus travel has arrived in Cornwall

1 month ago Wed 13th Apr 2022

A government funded scheme to encourage more people to travel by bus has been launched in Cornwall.

The reduced bus fares pilot scheme is a first for a local authority and follows a successful bid by Cornwall Council for £23.5m funded by UK Government. 

It will mean adult bus passengers will, on average, now pay one-third less for their fares.  

The pilot, which aims to encourage more people to hop on the bus and leave their cars at home, will run for the next four years. 

It is hoped the scheme will cut car emissions as road transport currently accounts for around a quarter of all of Cornwall’s carbon emissions. 

Richard Stevens, Cllr Desmonde and Simon Goff signing the fares agreement

The Council has worked with Go Cornwall Bus and other bus operators to transform Cornwall’s public transport network in recent years, including the launch of Any Ticket, Any Bus – all making public transport easier to understand and use.    

The reduced bus fares pilot is a central pillar of Cornwall’s Bus Service Improvement Plan, submitted to Government in October 2021 as a bid for transformational funding over the next three years that will further develop the bus network. 

Richard Stevens, managing director at Go Cornwall Bus said; “We are delighted to be a partner in this innovative scheme, for years people have told us price is one of the main barriers to regular bus use. This pilot seeks to remove price as a barrier, enabling us to offer excellent value for money fares. I hope that every Cornwall resident will seek to add bus travel to their regular lives, helping to secure a sustainable, connected future for the rest of our lives.” 

Bus operators, Cornwall Council and other at launch of the Bus Fares Pilot

Philip Desmonde, Cornwall Council cabinet portfolio holder for transport, said: “I am very pleased and proud we have been able to deliver the amazing value for money outcomes on our bus routes throughout Cornwall. Great for work, school and reaching the County services whilst contributing to lowering our carbon footprint.  

“Road transport is major contributor of carbon dioxide emissions and research shows that around a third of journeys made by car are of less than 5km. We all need to think about how we travel and I hope that this pilot will encourage more people to make more sustainable choices. If we all swap even one regular journey, it will make a difference. 

“I invite you all to try the simple pleasure of riding on one of our wonderful buses and experiencing our beautiful Cornish countryside, towns, villages and coastal scenes.” 

Simon Goff, managing director of First South West, said: “Anything that makes choosing the bus an even more enticing option is to be warmly welcomed and we look forward to helping even more passengers get to their destinations safely and efficiently over the coming months and years. Cornwall Council deserves praise for leading this initiative which is sure to have a significant and lasting positive impact throughout the county.”   

The scheme will be marketed and delivered by Transport for Cornwall – a partnership of Cornwall Council and its transport operators.