by Chris Lofts on 12 June, 2011
Northamptonshire County Council has refused to grant bus passes for the carers of
elderly, sick or disabled residents across Northamptonshire. Many elderly or
disabled residents who qualify for bus passes cannot travel alone. SNC, and other
district councils across the county, used to issue their carers free bus passes to use
when escorting their dependants.
The responsibility for issuing free Bus Passes to residents in Towcester and
Brackley switched from South Northamptonshire to the County Council in April this
year. The Conservative run County Council refused to issue carers bus passes.
‘The callous refusal to support the most needy members of our community is
appalling.’ said Liberal Democrat Councillor Martin Johns. ‘The County Council has
a budget of £500million but admits that the policy only saves £50,000 for the whole
county. Less than 1% of people who have free bus passes used to get one for their
carer.’ He added.
Chris Lofts, Liberal Democrat Councillor, explained, ‘We know of one resident in
Towcester who supports two family members with bus passes. They both regularly
visit Northampton General Hospital by bus as they cannot afford to run a car. The
resident used to have a free bus pass but now has to pay full fare to escort the family
to hospital. The extra costs have really hit this hard up family hard.’
Towcester Liberal Democrats are campaigning to urge Northamptonshire County
Council to change their policy. If you have been refused a carers free bus pass, or
know of someone, do get in touch with Chris Lofts on 01327 354396 or email