It's been 15 years since the Department for Transport organised the last major bus summit to encourage operators, local authorities and the bus supply industry to work together to stimulate patronage growth.
Transport Times are organising this event in London on the 12th February 2015, supported by the Department for Transport, with the aim of raising awareness on the role the bus can play in stimulating the economy, getting people to work, reducing emissions, providing access for the elderly and tackling inequality.
We are delighted that the Secretary of State for Transport, Patrick McLoughin MP, will give the opening keynote address and Minister of State, Baroness Kramer will give the closing keynote address.
Transport for Greater Manchester Chief Executive Jon Lamonte will be speaking on bus franchising in Greater Manchester following the recent government announcement that this power will be devolved to an elected mayor.
What is the timetable, how will it work, what will it mean for smart ticketing – and perhaps most importantly, who will take the revenue risk: Transport for Greater Manchester or the bus operators?
More fundamentally, he will consider questions such as: is franchising a panacea? Will it require more taxpayers’ money to be spent on buses? Can cities in the UK replicate London’s success on the bus front through franchising powers, or should they pay as much attention to what has happened with a state-owned and regulated bus market in Belfast?
The case for Quality Contracts in the North East will be also debated.