Bus service reforms in Corbyn pledge

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has outlined plans to extend public ownership of the UK’s bus networks if he becomes the next Prime Minister.

As part of this pledge Corbyn, who is being challenged by Owen Smith for the Labour leadership, will offer councils new franchising powers and allow them to set up local bus companies.

Promising to expand bus services to areas not currently covered, the Labour leader plans to give councils franchising powers over their bus networks, and to allow them to set up ‘municipal bus companies’.

Franchising powers are already to be expanded by the government's Bus Services Bill, focusing on areas with an elected mayor in place, ruling out allowing local authorities to set up bus companies.

Discussing rail, Corbyn also reiterated plans to ‘renationalise the railways’.

He said: “The Southern rail debacle just goes to show how private transport operators cannot be trusted with having passengers' best interests at heart. Public ownership of our railways is needed now to fix the transport nightmare we are currently faced with, and we know there is overwhelming support among the British public for a people's railway.”