To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps his Department is taking to increase the provision of public transport in rural areas.
The Government recognises the importance of public transport in rural areas.
All local authorities in England have powers to subsidise socially necessary bus services. The Department provides £43 million per year to local authorities to support this.
The Bus Services Act 2017 provides tools for local authorities to work more effectively with bus operators to improve bus services.
A number of projects from the £11.5 million Building Connections Fund will provide new community transport links to support people at most risk of isolation.
On rail, the Department’s Community Rail Development Strategy, published in Nov 2018, looks for ways to make it easier for the rail industry and local community rail partnerships to improve services and stations on local branch lines.