“The dream of free buses still lives on”

Guardian letters:

“David Walker’s recollection of South Yorkshire’s publicly subsidised public transport system (Letters, 30 May) is only part of the story.

The aim of the cheap fares was to make the bus service totally free of fares by 1984 – a hop-on, hop-off service funded through a precept on the rates and savings made from not having to collect fares.

The South Yorkshire Freedom Riders are pressing the Sheffield city region mayor Dan Jarvis, the Labour and Green parties, locally and nationally, to give serious consideration to a publicly owned and run universal basic service with a zero-fare expanded bus service. For most people it will mean a minimum of a £30 uplift in disposable income as well as removing cars from our roads and reducing levels of pollution.

Motorists are facing higher costs to force them into buses. Let’s give them a viable alternative. Let’s give everyone access to towns, villages, friends, the countryside and work. Let’s give them a free-to-use bus service as was intended by a visionary authority in 1974.

Mike Smith
South Yorkshire Freedom Riders, Barnsley”

https://www.theguardian.com/money/2019/may/30/the-dream-of-free-buses-still-lives-on?