You just WON! Another triumph for public transport campaigners

13 March 2024

West Yorkshire’s Mayor, Tracy Brabin, has today confirmed that she’s taking buses into public control.

Wherever you are in the country, YOUR emails, donations, signatures, and shares made this happen. Thank you!

After 14 years of cuts and privatisation, people are taking action to WIN services that work for people, not profit. 

Today has been a long time coming. In 2021, you helped raise £12,000 to fund a campaign for public control in West Yorkshire. But every action you have taken since then has contributed to today's triumph. And it goes to show that things can change if enough people fight for change.

When you sign petitions on energy, share posts on water, or email MPs for the NHS it builds your reputation as THE people ending privatisation. 

That’s how you got journalists at the Mail, Mirror, Guardian, and New Statesman to cover your fight for public control in West Yorkshire. And that’s why Mayor Brabin is taking back the buses.

Take an action - and double it

Imagine if you could double your impact. Imagine if every time you took action, some else joined you.

That’s the chance you have today. You can use this victory to get a friend involved in the fight for buses and other public services to work for communities, not shareholders. 

You can do one simple thing to build on this victory and keep winning for public control:

  1. Click HERE to share our victory on WhatsApp

Don’t let the press chalk up better buses as a gift from generous politicians.

Help show journalists and the public that better things happen when you campaign together.

Today’s the perfect day to show that by taking action with you, they can bring services into public hands.

How did we get here?

From 1930 to 1980 governments regulated bus services in the public interest, with Traffic Commissioners controlling the quality and quantity. Most services were delivered directly through publicly owned bus companies, often run by councils.

Thatcher’s 1985 Transport Act deregulated services outside London and led to the mass sale of council bus companies. The result is a wild west free market where a few private operators set fares, routes, timetables and standards without public oversight.

While councils can still buy existing operators, the Bus Service Act 2017 banned councils from setting up bus companies ‘from scratch,' something Scotland and Wales have overturned. It also allowed devolved English regions to re-regulate their services and bring them into London-style public control (or franchising).

In March 2021, following a We Own It campaign, the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, decided to bring the region’s buses back into public control starting in 2023: the first area to regulate services in over four decades.

Today’s announcement by Tracy Brabin is just the latest stage of this journey. With your action, and with more people joining the fight, together we can reach the destination - bus services in public control, across the country, that work for people not profit.

Find out more about the long road away from the wild west of bus deregulation here.


Do you believe in public services for people not profit?

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M replied on Permalink

just got back from the rally outside Wellington Street, leeds, where we awaited the final say on public control from mayor tracy brabin. fantastic people, great campaign. victory at last! there's a long road ahead but this first milestone is huge, and will bring benefits for local passengers, for drivers and the rest of the staff and for everyone else who's been let down by a late or non-existant bus

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