Profit Before People!

Earlier this week i learned that Arriva was to increase child fares in April from the current half adult fare to two thirds adult fare, blaming the reduction of the Government Bus Services Operators Grant (BSOG), this will put something between 30p to 40p on the currentr fare.

This to me is the most cynical ploy of a huge company who simply want to satisfy their shareholders without any regard to the struggling hard pressed families.      The Government announced the cut in BSOG in 2010 giving the bus companies 18 months to prepare for this, and when it was announced the bus companies said they would be able to absorb the cost, is this what they call absorbing?

Back in 2007 when Merseytravel removed a £2.7 million subsidy to support child fares, the then MD of Arriva in the North refused to increase child fares to make up the money, recognising the difficulties it would place on families, sadly he is no longer with us and the current people in charge obviously dont have his sense of community and simply see their shareholders as the be all and end all.     And all this at a time when we should all be looking at childrens concessionary fares

I sincerely hope the other bus companies don’t follow Arrivas lead.    Shame on you Arriva!

Arriva Buses, We Had Some Communication Problems With Wirral

Yesterday I attended the Merseytravel Tram and Bus Committee meeting.   Part of the agenda allows Members to ask questions of bus operators over issues of concern.      Inevitably the main topic of conversation/ questions of the bus operators concerned the recent adverse weather conditions and the ensung chaos with bus services with the ultimate suspension of services for safety reasons.     When questioned, a senior Arriva Manager talked of how good some local authorities had been in liaising with them over gritting, holding up Knowsley, Liverpool, Sefton and Halton as examples of good partnership working!   I asked what working arrangements they had with Wirral to ensure that the gritting enabled a quick return to the provision of bus services?   His answer was diplomatically put as, we had some problems in Wirral’   When pushed further he said  ‘we had some communication problems with Wirral’.       Clearly some discussion needs to take place between Wirral and the bus operators!