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Farron calls for adequate special grant

March 5, 2008 3:00 PM

Tim Farron is to meet with Transport Minister Rosie Winterton to discuss the use of North West concessionary (NoW) cards in the Lake District. This meeting was requested by the MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale when it came to light that this scheme cost more for the South Lakeland District Council because of the high tourist rate of the Lake District.

The scheme has pushed spending in South Lakeland from £204,000 to £924,000 per annum, with figures set to rise at the nationalisation of the project.

Mr Farron stated:

"I am a big supporter of the NoW card scheme, as it gives travel concessions to thousands of older people who rely on public transport, it also helps to take people out of private cars by encouraging them to use greener forms of transport.

"However, the significant extra cost to those who live in areas of high tourism must be taken into account, and these councils must be adequately compensated by special grant. It isn't fair that local council tax payers in South Lakeland are forced to subsidise the public transport costs of visitors from right across the UK."

The meeting with Rosie Winterton is set to take place this afternoon at the Department for Transport.