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£47 million confirmed to improve bus services in Derbyshire

Published: 10 August 2022

We've been awarded £47 million to improve bus services over the next two and a half years.


Last year the Government published a new National Bus Strategy which set out a vision for future improvements across England and how bus services can recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. The strategy placed a requirement on us and bus companies in the area to work together to create a Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP).

Working with bus operators, district and borough councils, bus passenger groups, disability groups, and other special interest organisations a consultation was held last year, which asked the public what they wanted to see to improve bus services. The results helped to inform the BSIP which was submitted to the Government last year and asked for money to improve services across the county.

Derbyshire’s success in gaining £47 million provides the money which will help pay for:

  • more frequent buses and extended hours for vital services
  • improved bus punctuality and reliability
  • better value bus fares, especially for young people and those looking for work
  • expansion of the ‘tap on and tap off’ system for paying for tickets
  • new transport hubs with Real Time Information to help connect bus services to other bus and train services
  • more demand-responsive services for rural and semi-rural areas
  • a new website and app which will cover all services to make planning a journey much easier

It is expected that work will start on delivering these improvements from October 2022.

Our Cabinet Member for Highways Assets and Transport, Councillor Kewal Singh Athwal, said:

“To have the money finally confirmed is great news for everyone in the county.

“Bus services will become so much more attractive to more people and will mean less traffic on our roads. This will make a positive contribution to our approach to tackling climate change.

“We will build on the positive work to date and continue to work in partnership with all the bus companies on a wide range of projects to improve bus travel.”

A partnership board, the BSIP Enhanced Partnership Board, has been set up to deliver the actions in the BSIP. It is chaired by Professor Margaret Bell, with Jeff Counsell, Managing Director of trentbarton the vice chair.

Professor Margaret Bell CBE said:

“This funding is the outcome of a lot of hard work and commitment of council officers and public transport operators who will continue to work together to make public transport a realistic alternative to the use of private cars in the future delivering substantial benefits to health.”

Jeff Counsell added:

“The allocation of this funding just goes to show what can be achieved when the public and private sectors work together for a common cause. I know that we, and all bus operators, are looking forward to delivering the BSIP outcomes in continued partnership with the county.”