Bus Services Bill [Lords]

Part of Supply and Appropriation (Anticipation and Adjustments) Bill – in the House of Commons at 2:17 pm on 1st March 2017.

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Photo of Alan Brown Alan Brown Scottish National Party, Kilmarnock and Loudoun 2:17 pm, 1st March 2017

I absolutely agree. It gives everybody the confidence to go on the buses, particularly the elderly and tourists and other people who are not familiar with different cities and towns. There are benefits for all passengers.

Returning to people with a visual impairment, a Guide Dogs report states that seven out of 10 passengers on buses that do not have audio-visual information have missed their stop because they did not know where to get off or were not assisted in getting off. I cannot imagine how distressing that must be. People who feel uncomfortable in using public transport would be reluctant to go back on a bus after an experience like that. I was pleased to hear that Lilian Greenwood has also participated in a blindfold walk. If any pressure comes up during the consultation about costs, I urge the Government to resist it. If anyone has any doubts, they should do what I and other Members have done and go on a blindfold walk to see what it is like.

In conclusion, I commend the Government again—as long as they follow through in the consultation and implement the proposal within an appropriate timescale. I also commend Guide Dogs, and the 30 organisations that supported it, for running a successful campaign, the many constituents who have contacted me, and the 30,000 people who signed the petition.