Express & Star

Andy Street responds to furore over bus fare increases as 2025 fare freeze is scrapped

West Midlands Mayor Andy Street has responded to questions following news the region’s main bus operator will be raising fares by as much as 26 per cent.

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David Bradford, managing director of National Express West Midlands, and Andy Street stood in front of an electric bus saying bus fares will be frozen until 2025 - which has since been scrapped.

On Monday, National Express West Midlands (NXWM), which runs 93 per cent of West Midlands buses, announced it was increasing ticket prices from July 3.

Under the new tariff an all-day ticket will rise from £4 to £4.50 and a weekly ticket from £15 to £17.

Single tickets might go up from £2 to £2.70 (a 26 per cent increase) if NXWM decides not to continue with the government’s £2 price cap scheme, recently extended until November.

The mayor released a statement yesterday saying the increase was “disappointing” and emphasised that West Midlands bus fares had been “frozen for six years whilst they rose elsewhere”.

He explained that, without the increase, nearly half the network would be at risk of cuts and said he would “not allow [it] to be decimated”.

In September, Mr Street had announced a fare freeze until 2025, ahead of the Tory conference, but this is no longer going ahead.

The Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS) asked Mr Street if he felt undermined by NXWM’s change of course.