Mayor of West Yorkshire Tracy Brabin has welcomed the Government’s decision to extend the Bus Recovery Grant.

Mayor Brabin had warned that services in West Yorkshire were under threat if the Government failed to support the bus industry beyond the end of March.

On Friday the Government announced that £80 million would be made available to protect bus services from April 1 to June 30.

The Government has also announced plans to provide up to £75 million so that bus operators can continue to cap single bus fares outside of London at £2 until the end of June, saving passengers money and encouraging more people back on the bus.

A similar fare cap – known as Mayor’s Fares – is already in operation across West Yorkshire for a three-year period.

Mayor Brabin said: “I’m relieved that the Government has finally listened to the mayors and taken action to stop some bus services from being axed in our regions.

“But this eleventh hour response has come too late for some communities, with some bus operators announcing further cuts to services.

“We need a sustainable, long-term funding plan to save buses across the UK, not a sticking plaster. The Government must address this immediately and use the time it has bought with the latest announcement to make real change.”

Bus passenger numbers still haven’t recovered to pre-Covid levels and bus companies say they still need support to maintain services.

At least seven services in West Yorkshire would have been axed had the grant not been extended, according to West Yorkshire Combined Authority.