Focus of work
Reclaim Our Buses is a targeted campaign to get the buses of the West of England into public control, using the franchising powers vested in the Metro Mayor. This is a coalition-based campaign co-ordinated by WESTACT – West of England Shared Travel and Active Transport. WESTACT’s mission is to reduce car-dependency in the West of England, as buses are an essential part of this integrated transport vision. The Reclaim Our Buses campaign includes a wide range of activists from across rural and urban parts of the West of England, a mix of ages from XR Youth to Bristol Older People’s Forum, and a mix of reasons for joining, from protesting recent cuts to local bus routes, to seeing buses as an essential part of our zero carbon future.
This campaign targets Dan Norris, the West of England Metro Mayor, who has the powers to bring buses into public control through franchising. The group’s first demand is that he start the official process of investigation of bus franchising, which would provide statutory access to data from bus companies, and allow the local area to make an informed decision. Other metro mayors who have carried out this investigation have concluded that franchising is the way forward.
- integrated tickets and fares across all bus providers in the West of England
- co-ordinated routes and timetables to create a networked service
- improved conditions and terms for bus drivers
- ability to cross-subsidise socially necessary routes from profitable routes – treating the network as a system, not just a set of routes
- paving the way for future mass transit system
- integration with other transport – including local and national rail; active travel; improved walking and cycling environment
- essential mobility for people who can’t or don’t drive.