15,000 face wait on free bus passes for over-60s

Almost 15,000 people who turn 60 this year in the West Midlands will no longer be able to get a bus pass to use from their birthday under new plans.

Almost 15,000 people who turn 60 this year in the West Midlands will no longer be able to get a bus pass to use from their birthday under new plans.

A new system is to be introduced by the Department for Transport from April, which will mean men and women can only get their pass on the date they are eligible for state pension.

This is rising on a sliding scale between 2010 and 2020.

A report for West Midland transport authority Centro revealed today those born before and on April 5, 1950, will get their bus pass the day they turn 60.

Those born between April 6 and May 5 will have to wait until May 6, and those whose birthdays are between May 6 and June 5 will have to wait until July 6.

Those born between August 6 and September 5, 1950, will wait for January.

Councillor Bob Badham, Sandwell Council’s transport boss, said today he was concerned pensioners were being denied free travel.

John Mellor, chairman of the Wolverhampton branch of the National Pensioners’ Convention, said: “This is tinkering for tinkering’s sake.”

Centro spokesman Steve Swingler said: “Holders in the West Midlands will continue to get one of the best schemes in the country.”

Comments for: "15,000 face wait on free bus passes for over-60s"

STAN

I FOR ONE WILL NOT BE VOTING LABOUR EVER AGAIN.

WHAT A SLAP IN THE FACE FOR THE OVER 60's WHO HAVE WORKED ALL THEIR LIVES.

Danimal

This is disgusting. And another thing are we not supposed to encourage people to use public transport. Mind you buses are horrible, dirty hell holes.

BRUCE

Understand the unfortunate logic.I am looking at this at 59 unemployed in the East End of Paris.

I have seen a discussion in another Midland paper over discussions for jobseekers and free transport too.

Just for information we have three systems :

Workers : pay 50-50 with employers between the zone of residence and the zone of work

Unemployed people : pay full whack

People on emergency incomes (RMA) and free medical treatment (CMU) : get free transport and in certain zones

I pay full whack.Making interviews a problem.Many people try to travel without paying which leads to fines and legal difficulties making a job harder to find.

I'll tell you about over 60 when I get there.

There are involved discussions and free this and free that is all,like in the Midlands,are all coming under review.

Ray

Funny old world, isn't it.

One will often read of affluent car-owning households who complain bitterly when bus companies try introducing new services onto their estates ("think of all the noise and pollution from those smelly great beasts disturbing the peace of our sunny afternoons in the garden!").

Sure enough, when they turn 60+ and receive their free bus passes those same affluent householders can then be observed badgering CENTRO to spend public money subsidising bus services onto those estates "because many old people depend on them" and "we should be encouraging more people to use public transport".

gill

we work all our life towards our retirement being made redundant at 59 with no hope of getting another job now we are being told we have to wait longer to pick up our pension and now bus pass i for one will not be voting labour ever again

STEVE

Thank god for good sense. Firstly this plan is of no fault of the current government and would have been implimented whoever was in office, so to those who intend to withdraw their vote from Labour at the next election, it is obvious that they know nothing about politics and are amongst the millions of ignorant citizens of this nation. Secondly if the "individual""over 60" is of working age, and has not retired, why should they not continue to pay for the running of a public transport system. There are those who can pay but won't that causes the fares to rise. Maybe if their were more passengers on the buses, then there would be affordable fares for everyone.

phil

i think the only ones that know nothing about politics are the politicians themselves

Patricia

What a turnaround - it's not so many years ago, that on the grounds of equality, 60 year old men were entitled to a free bus pass - are they now going to have to give them back and wait the requisite time before having them returned? The closer I get to 60, the less there is to look forward to.

Geoff Lewis

Another petty and penny pinching exercise by the government to rob older people of a little bit of compensation for all the taxes they have paid over their working life.

I have just looked on the Directgov website and there is no mention of the increase in age.

Another stealth tax slipped in by the back door.

stephen evans

another change that has been made through the back door to pensions qualifying ages is the winter fuel payments.

The date that you can recieve them has also incresed

At this time there is no published time scale to be found on any directgov sight.

A case of "keeping it quiet" perhaps.

51&counting

You have got to be realy stupid to take away this small offering from the people who have

possibly worked and used this transport to get to and from work for many years this is the thanks you get for supporting public transport .these people might as well buy a car and add more pollution to the already polluted country.

Dave

Come off it guys!!! Those of you who are complaining about a free service that west midlands transport provide to you in the first place!!! What's the big deal wait a couple of months more. How egar are you to jump on that bus to go somewhere. Some of you who are 60 and complaining about waiting for a free bus pass probably never use public transport now but now it's free you want immediatly!!!