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Cheaper bus tickets and faster bus journeys are one step closer thanks to a partnership that has been approved by Portsmouth City Council this week.  

The Enhanced Partnership between bus operators in the city and Portsmouth City Council will be submitted to central government next month, and sets out ways to fund new, cheaper, tickets and make bus journey times shorter and more reliable. This is a fundamental part of the National Bus Strategy designed to increase bus use and deliver a wide range of economic, health and social objectives.

Portsmouth is planning to create a better bus service and the partnership establishes a formal agreement between the council and bus operators Stagecoach and First bus that will support the delivery of Portsmouth’s Transport Strategy.

The partnership recognises lower bus fares are the top priority for residents, and will seek funding for new, cheaper, tickets available on both First and Stagecoach buses. It also proposes measures to make bus journey times shorter and more reliable, improve passenger satisfaction and offer better evening, Sunday and early morning journeys.

Cllr Lynne Stagg, Cabinet Member for Traffic and Transportation, said: “I welcome this opportunity to further develop our relationships with bus operators in the city so that together we can improve the quality of the service, increasing reliability and providing buses when and where people need them. I hope this will result in people needing to use a car less often to help us cut down on congestion and reduce air pollution in Portsmouth.”

Portsmouth’s Bus Service Improvement plan, which was submitted to government last year, provides the overarching framework for the Enhanced Partnership and funding is yet to be confirmed. However, Portsmouth was one of only five authorities named in the Levelling Up White Paper on 2 February 2022