06:42PM, Saturday 23 May 2020
The Transport Secretary has announced £283 million of Government investment to enable public transport to move back to a full timetable.
At the daily press conference briefing this afternoon Grant Shapps said rail and tube services increased at the beginning of this week and that more will be reinstated next month.
“In the short term we’ll need to bring back more public transport to keep families safe,” he said.
“However I do want to stress this funding does not mean we can go back to using public transport whenever we like.
“Remember, those who can should still work from home, those who can should still avoid all public transport.
“Even a fully restored service will only be capable of carrying, at best, one fifth of the normal capacity while social distancing is taken into account.”
Mr Shapps urged the people who need to use public transport, those who are unable to cycle, walk or drive, to ‘please avoid the rush hour’.
He also told of how the Government has sought ‘innovative proposals’ from the tech sector to help passengers avoid congestion.
These include a personalised information service called ‘Passenger Connect’ which tells rail users how disruption, and crowding may affect their journey, offering users alternatives to help them maintain social distancing.
Mr Shapps also said that the Government will repurpose parking in places just outside town centres, so people ‘can park on the outskirts and finish their journeys on foot, or bike, or even e-scooter’.
To help relieve the pressure on public transport Mr Shapps also announced that from next month a £50 bicycle maintenance voucher.
He said: “The scheme will help up to half a million people drag bikes out of retirement, speeding up the cycling resolution, helping individuals become fitter and healthier and reducing air pollution which remains a hidden killer.”
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