West Yorkshire hail cash injection into bus retrofitting programme

The West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA) has welcomed the £2.9m they will receive from government to retrofit 179 buses, which extends their retrofitting programme to 479 buses in total.

‘I am delighted that in the week that we officially launched the West Yorkshire Bus Alliance, which has Cleaner Air as one of its key aims, this additional funding has been announced,’ said Cllr Kim Groves, chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority Transport Committee.

‘The reduction in pollution levels and the health benefits of the original scheme covering 300 buses were significant but the funding to include a further 179 buses in the scheme is going to give it a big, and very welcome boost to local people’s health,’ she added.

As a result of this second successful bid, the authority claims the scheme will save the NHS £13.4m over five years due to increased health benefits for people living in the region.

The authority has already used funding from the DfT’s Clean Bus Technology Fund to retrofit its 26 AccessBus vehicles, which is a service that provides door-to-door local transport for people with limited mobility who are unable to use conventional bus services.

Last week, the government announced details of the 14 local authorities who will share £25m of the Clean Bus Technology Fund to help retrofit their region’s bus fleets.

It follows last year’s £40m grant to 20 local authorities, which allowed councils to work with bus companies and technology providers to bring buses up to low emission standards.

Alongside West Yorkshire, Manchester will receive nearly £3m to retrofit 176 of their buses and Liverpool will receive £2.5m to retrofit 129 of theirs.

In total, 1817 buses are expected to be retrofitted across the country due to the funding.