Transport fight is taken to No. 10

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A FIGHT for fairer public transport funding has been taken to Downing Street.

Norfolk County Council representatives and MPs gave a 23,500-signature petition to the Government on Tuesday as part of the Fair Fares campaign.

The council is unhappy with a £4.5 million shortfall in Government funding for the concessionary travel scheme for 2011/12.

It claims it will be forced to take up the slack in order to run the nationally-funded scheme – putting pressure on other services.

Graham Plant, cabinet member for planning and transportation, said: “So far our representations, which have been echoed by authorities across the country, have not brought results but it is an issue that won’t go away.”

Cllr Plant was joined by Brandon Lewis, MP for Great Yarmouth, George Freeman, MP for Mid Norfolk, and Keith Simpson, MP for Broadland.

Mr Lewis and Cllr Plant also met Norman Baker, Transport Minister, to hand over a formal request for a government grant to cover the unfunded costs.

Mr Lewis said: “Thousands of people in Norfolk depend on public transport to live full and independent lives, and I would like to thank everyone who has signed the petition -– in doing so they have demonstrated that Norfolk values public transport and the benefits it brings.”