The Member of the Welsh Parliament for Aberconwy – Janet Finch-Saunders MS – has today (24 September) welcomed a funding commitment from the Welsh Government to maintain levels of bus services throughout the winter months.
Throughout the pandemic, Mrs Finch-Saunders made repeated representations to the Welsh Government to protect service levels in North Wales. According to a Written Statement from the Deputy Minister for Economy and Transport:
Further to the announcement last month of an additional £10m of funding to support the provision of a fuller service from September, I am pleased to announce that the Welsh Government is making available an additional £84.6m of funding to maintain and develop these enhanced levels of service for the rest of the financial year, while reduced demand and capacities significantly affect ticket revenues.
Commenting on the issue of bus funding, Janet said:
“Buses are the most frequently used method of public transport in Wales and are an essential daily necessity for many constituents of Aberconwy. They have supported our key workers throughout this pandemic, helped children return to school and will be central to any planned COVID recovery.
“Earlier this year I urged the Welsh Government to put the brakes on any further cuts to services by outlining a further funding assistance plan to support operators. I am pleased that this request has resulted in action from the administration in Cardiff Bay.
"This funding commitment is essential if we are to prevent the people of North Wales from feeling abandoned and isolated. It promises to ensure that enhanced levels of service can continue for the rest of the financial year, while reduced capacities continues to impact operator ticket revenues.
“However, if the Welsh Government are serious about using buses to help drive economic activity, and support our nation’s quest to minimise carbon emissions, then an additional and long-term funding framework is required.”