First to launch consultation on bus fares in the Greater Bristol area

BUS company First will launch a consultation on the fares it charges asking members of the public whether they represent value for money in the Greater Bristol area.

The news comes after nearly 3,000 bus users signed an online petition demanding cheaper fares.

The review will be inviting participation from George Ferguson.

First said a third party wiould be appointed to oversee the process to ensure it is comprehensive.

Justin Davies, regional managing director for First in the South West and Wales, said: "We are aware that the issue of fares in Bristol has often been a contentious one with a perception that the cost of travel here is significantly higher than elsewhere. This is frustrating for everyone and is something we have wished to tackle for some time."

He added: "We want to heighten awareness about the industry and allow people to better understand the economics of running buses and the cost pressures we face. In return we want to hear from the public and their representatives, in particular what they think we could do differently to both attract more people on to buses and deliver the best possible value for money for our customers. "This is why we are launching this review and consultation and we hope that as many people as possible will let us have their views."

The firm said it expected to complete the review by the end of the summer.

For more information about First in the West of England go to www.firstgroup.com/bristol

First is also on Twitter, at @FirstBSA, and Facebook, at www.facebook.com/FirstinWestofEngland

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