Today marks the start of a nine-week consultation on the future for bus services in Surrey.
The consultation is seeking residents’ views on three areas:
- Investing in cleaner, greener buses – to help reduce the 41% of carbon emissions generated by transport
- Introducing more on-demand services – shared, door-to-door bus services in rural areas that are available when needed, using a booking service
- Changing some bus services – reducing a very small amount of bus services. This is because people are using buses less and they are also more expensive to run. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, 27 million passenger trips were made each year on Surrey buses. Trips have since reduced to 18 million.
Matt Furniss, Cabinet Member for Transport, Infrastructure and Economy said: “The bus industry is facing a challenging time, resulting from the drop in passenger numbers and rising costs following the COVID-19 pandemic. This means that bus operators need to consider which services are commercially viable for them to run, and as a county council we need to consider the value of the bus services we fund.
“At the same time, we want to continue to improve our bus network by investing over £32 million in ultra-low and zero emission buses and bringing in more on-demand bus services like the Mole Valley connect service which offers a more flexible way to travel by bus and is proving popular with our residents.
“I encourage everyone to share the views and help us to shape the future of bus services in our county.”
An online survey is available atwww.surreycc.gov.uk/futurebusreview. Paper copies of the survey will also be available at Surrey Libraries, at Surrey County Council offices in Reigate, Leatherhead and Woking, on buses and on request by calling Surrey County Council on 03456 009 009.
The consultation will run from 3 November to 6 January 2023.