Free bus travel - will the changes affect you in Dorchester?

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By alfiebass | Friday, January 07, 2011, 10:52

Do you live in Dorset and get free bus travel? Well, there is still time to have your say on changes to travel concessions

People who receive travel concessions in Dorset have until 14 January to

have their say on how possible changes could affect them.

Dorset County Council will take over responsibility for concessionary

travel in Dorset from the district and borough councils on 1 April 2011.

The county council is currently asking older people and people with

disabilities to complete a short questionnaire saying how any changes

might affect them.

While free bus travel after 9.30am will continue, reductions in

Government funding may mean the county council will not be able to

provide some of the additional concessions currently offered by some

borough and district councils, including:

•       Free bus travel before 9.30am and after 11pm on weekdays (East Dorset, North Dorset and West Dorset)

•       Taxi tokens/vouchers (Christchurch, East Dorset, Purbeck and West Dorset)

•       Rail warrants (Purbeck)

The questionnaire is available to everyone who could be affected by the

changes.  Copies can be picked up from local council offices and the

main Dorset libraries. The questionnaire can also be completed online,


All completed questionnaires must be received by Friday 14 January.

Up to and including 4 January 2011, the county council had received

1,275 completed questionnaires.  The responses will help the county

council draw up proposals for how the new scheme will operate.

For any questions about changes to concessionary bus fares or help with

completing the questionnaire, call Dorset County Council on (01305)

221059 or email

Peter Finney, Dorset County Council cabinet member for transport, said: “This is a new challenge for the county council. We are working very

closely with our borough and district council partners to make the

transition as smooth as possible.

“While many pass holders will notice little difference, we appreciate

that some of the decisions we may need to make will mean that some

people will find it more difficult to make certain journeys.

“However, we will be doing our very best to make sure that people experience as little hardship as possible.”



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