Council set to protect enhanced free travel for more than 22,000 older and disabled people

Council News
15:48, Thursday, 2nd March 2023

Thousands of over 60s who have reached state pension age, disabled residents and their carers across North Lincolnshire will have their free enhanced travel passes protected.

The £1.8m scheme – first introduced in 2017 – extends the times people can travel for free or at discounted rates to enable them to get out and about and live independently.

Cllr Rob Waltham, leader, North Lincolnshire Council, said: “We are committed to enable residents to live independently, to enjoy visiting friends and relatives, or simply to do some shopping.

“This commitment has seen us provide extra cash to extend the money already provided by the Government to make sure the people who want to travel can do so at the times which best suit them.

“Enabling people to live in their own homes, families and communities is a priority and will remain one, while every council has to provide free travel between certain hours, we are committed to enhancing this further so residents can freely travel at their leisure.

“Thanks to Government cash every council in the country provides free travel between 9.30am and 11pm, Monday to Friday and all day at weekends and bank holidays but in North Lincolnshire we have enhanced this commitment. The enhanced concessionary fare scheme includes free or discounted travel every day before 9.30am on journeys within or from North Lincolnshire.

“This investment comes alongside other commitments to support residents which include freezing general council tax for the coming year, protecting free car parking and subsidised offers through Active Lincs for older and younger residents. This additional support for older residents is helping to protect those most in need from the impact of global inflation.”

Government cash has been used to give 5,000 pensioners £200 to help with energy bills on top of the £400 everyone in the county has received and the £150 council tax payment scheme which went to more than 60,000 homes across the area.

Cllr Julie Reed, cabinet member for children and families, said: “This additional support has a huge impact on the lives of many people, making travel easier and ultimately, cheaper. Being able to get out and about really does enable people to enjoy a full and active life, not restricted by when and how they might want to use public transport.”