Wales to simplify buses with 'one network' model


The Welsh Government has pledged to work closely with local government, the bus industry and passengers on a proposed franchising model that it says aims to deliver ‘one network, one timetable and one ticket’.

Deputy climate change minister Lee Waters has pledged to bring forward legislation to change the way bus services are delivered across Wales.

Ceri Breeze /

The devolved administration described its Bus White Paper as ‘a key step towards a new model for running buses in Wales and a chance for us look at what Wales needs from its public transport services’.

It has launched a 12-week public consultation on how the new system is designed. Mr Waters a decline in the bus industry in Wales over the years had left an industry ‘that is broken and in need of much investment’, but said the was ‘confident’ that the administration’s plans ‘will help pave the way to a healthy recovery’.

He said: ‘For too many years we have created a culture of car dependency which has allowed individual freedoms and flexibilities that we all value, but it has also locked in deep inequalities and environmental harms. As we look to recover from the pandemic and take action to tackle the climate emergency buses will play a critical role in keeping our communities connected and offering people a sustainable transport alternative to the private car.

‘We’re going to be putting people before profit and providing passengers with a well-planned, easy to understand and connected bus network that makes the right thing to do the easy thing to do.

The administration said that ahead of the proposed legislative reform the white paper, ‘Bus Cymru’ sets out ‘a detailed route map for how we want to improve all aspects of bus service provision for passengers [including] infrastructure, road allocation, accessibility, integration with other public transport modes, and, more widely, how we can bring about positive change by working with our partners in local government and the bus industry’.

 Campaign group Transport Action Network Cymru welcomed the move.

Its Welsh roads and climate campaigner, Paula Renzel, said: ‘It’s good to see the Welsh Government being ambitious while learning from the complex systems set up in England and Scotland. This should hopefully allow them to deliver improvements more quickly than in England. There, five years after the legislation was passed no new franchising has yet taken place.

‘We look forward to the day when a reliable and accessible bus network will form the backbone of an affordable and sustainable transport network. This will be essential if we are going to put people before profit. ‘

Register now for full access

Register just once to get unrestricted, real-time coverage of the issues and challenges facing UK transport and highways engineers.

Full website content includes the latest news, exclusive commentary from leading industry figures and detailed topical analysis of the highways, transportation, environment and place-shaping sectors. Use the link below to register your details for full, free access.

Already a registered? Login

comments powered by Disqus