At November’s meeting of the Oldham full council Labour brought forward a motion calling on the council to encourage residents to respond to the Greater Manchester Combined Authority’s consultation on bus franchising.
Councillor George Hulme introduced the following motion, highlighting the terrible service that currently exists in large parts of Oldham, and speaking in favour of a bus franchising system that will create a fairer, better coordinated and more accountable bus network that is linked to other transport modes and includes simpler and more affordable ticketing:
This council notes that following deregulation of the UK bus network outside of London in the 1980s, bus companies run whatever routes they like, charging what they like, with various ticketing structures. This means that in 2017 there were 140 types of tickets available in Greater Manchester, across 22 different bus companies, and usage is declining as passengers opt for simpler alternatives.
The Greater Manchester Combined Authority is now consulting on how our buses are run, proposing to introduce a franchising system that will make the bus network better coordinated, simpler, more far reaching, and responsive to the needs of residents rather than for private profit.
This council resolves to:
Encourage residents to complete the GMCA’s consultation into bus franchising
Explain the benefits of bus franchising for Oldham
Request that the Chief Executive write to Mayor Andy Burnham on the matter, calling on him to choose to regulate our buses in Greater Manchester, which he has the power to do following the consultation.