Gloucestershire County Council has put together its latest Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP) outlining the county’s long-term strategy for public transport.

The plan needs to be submitted to the Department for Transport (DfT) by June 12 as a condition of receiving £2,209,623 in BSIP phase 2 funding that has been allocated to the county council.

It outlines Gloucestershire’s vision for bus services and how to deliver it, in partnership with transport service operators and others. It aims to increase bus use through wide-ranging service improvements across the county.

The BSIP’s objectives include faster and more reliable bus services, more attractive fares and ticketing, better vehicles, a more comprehensive network and ensuring buses are at the heart of an integrated transport system serving the needs of everyone in Gloucestershire.

A report that was due to go to the council’s Cabinet today (Wednesday) says that the delivery of the BSIP will be measured against six targets – bus journey times, reliability, passenger numbers, network accessibility, vehicle quality and customer satisfaction.

Improvements planned for 2024-25 include enhancing a number of bus services, with a focus on weekend and evening extensions. 

A fleet of 58 electric buses will be ordered by the end of this year making more than 20 per cent of Gloucestershire’s buses electric.

Councillors were expected to approve the plan for publication and submission to the DfT by June 12.

Cllr Philip Robinson (Con, Mitcheldean), Cabinet member with responsibility for buses, said: “We want buses to be at the heart of an attractive, affordable and integrated transport system and our Bus Service Improvement Plan 2024 outlines this vision. The publication of the BSIP will enable us to access a second year of funding from the Department for Transport, so we can deliver yet more improvements across the network. We are committed to making bus services more reliable and appealing.”

Roads Minister Guy Opperman said: “Local people deserve a modern, reliable, and affordable public transport system. I'm delighted to have worked alongside the local council and local MPs to give Gloucestershire County Council over £2 million to boost its bus services this year.