Roads, railways, buses and trams are to receive a £283 million funding boost and half a million bike repair vouchers will be made available as part of plans to get Britain moving again during the coronavirus crisis.
The Transport Secretary said today the cash injection, divided into £254m for buses and £29m for trams and light rail, would increase both frequency and capacity of services while ensuring there is enough space on vehicles to allow for social distancing.
Grant Shapps also announced that up to 500,000 vouchers, worth £50 each, would be provided to help cyclists ‘drag bikes out of retirement’ and get more people travelling on two wheels.
Buses will receive a £254m boost to increase frequency and capacity of services. Pictured: A bus driver wearing a face mask drives over Waterloo Bridge
Grant Shapps, pictured today, said he wants to ensure there is enough space on public transport vehicles to allow for social distancing
The Transport Secretary said a cycle voucher scheme would help half a million people ‘drag bikes out of retirement’. Pictured: A cyclist wearing a mask on Waterloo Bridge this week
The money for public transport will be spent on making adjustments to vehicles, signage, deep cleaning and the provision of hand sanitiser.
In addition, 3,400 people, including British Transport Police officers and Network Rail staff, have been deployed at stations to make sure passengers follow the social distancing guidance put in place.
Light rail funding will also support services in Sheffield, Nottingham, Tyne and Wear, Manchester and the West Midlands.
A personalised information service has also been introduced to inform people about disruption and crowding on services.
It comes after the Department for Transport announced earlier this month that £225m will go towards creating pop-up and permanent cycle lanes across England to encourage people to use bikes instead of public transport when necessary.
Mr Shapps, who will lead the daily Downing Street press conference this afternoon, said: ‘To make sure people can travel safely when they need to, we are increasing capacity on buses and light rail, as well as helping local authorities fast-track plans to support cyclists and pedestrians, further reducing pressure on our transport network.