Norfolk County Council tells bus operators to allow pensioners to travel for free - after some were refused because of changes to on-bus scanners

Bus operators have been told to continue to allow concessionary bus pass holders to travel for free – after some drivers refused because the cards were not recognised by the on-bus scanners.

Following a massive changeover of the back-office system used to record the passes and journeys, bus operators have had to make significant changes to the software within the on-bus scanners. This means they are not automatically recording some of the concessionary travel passes.

Norfolk County Council spokesman Mark Langlands said: 'There are 180,000 or so concessionary bus pass holders in Norfolk and we are aware that on some buses with on-bus scanners there have been instances where the software has not recognised the card. This is because of national changes to the technology being used which is being addressed by bus operators up and down the country. We have been in touch with Konect, Anglian and First to remind them that bus drivers should still allow anyone holding a valid pass to travel for free.'

It comes as a campaign to get Norfolk a fairer deal when it comes to who should pick up the bill for concessionary bus fares has led to the county council clawing back �1.2m of a multi-million shortfall.

The Norfolk County Council campaign won a review of the formula used to allocate funds for the concessionary scheme. More than 23,500 people signed the council's Fair Fares campaign protesting about the unfairness of the county's �4.5m shortfall in funding for the scheme. The shortfall was created because the government does not give the council enough to fully cover the cost of reimbursing bus companies for travel by concessionary bus pass holders.


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Now it has been revealed the shortfall has been reduced by �1.2m after campaigners won a review of the funding system.

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