TSSA welcomes 'major step forward' for Manchester buses

TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has welcomed news that Greater Manchester's bus network is being brought back under public control, describing the move as a "major step forward".

The region’s Mayor, Andy Burnham, has announced that buses will be run in a London-style system where operators bid to run services on a franchise basis. The plans are designed to improve services and cut fares.

Greater Manchester is the first area outside London to have a regulated bus system since the 1980s.

Manuel Cortes said: 

"This is really good news and will be a major step forward for transport in Manchester and of great benefit to all the people there.

"Well done to Andy Burnham. What he has rightly identified is that – like in London with our Mayor Sadiq Khan – he will now have much greater control over the fares and timetabling of buses in the region.

"Elsewhere, we have unbridled privatisation, with a deregulated bus system that fails too many people in too many areas of our country. What we really need is a fully integrated public transport system across the board in public ownership. Run for the people and not profits.

"Of course, what we would ideally like to see is the removal of franchising altogether on our bus routes – as it has been shown to have been an abject failure on the rail network.

"There’s no doubt that as we move out of the shadow of the pandemic joined up public travel will play a key part in meeting our climate change commitments and getting our economy moving again."