“Buses better than trams” claims TfL advisor

But local bus passengers are 'least satisfied' in the UK

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Contact details of key figures:
Christopher Dean, Project Director, westlondontram@tfl.gov.uk

Save Ealing's Streets 020 8998 7360

London Travel Watch - enquiries@londontravelwatch.org.uk

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Senior Tfl adviser Dick Halle has admitted that tram schemes are not feasible because they cost 10 to 20 times more than buses and provide little added benefit.

Whilst his admission was welcomed by campaigners against the West London Tram, who fear that the scheme will effectively close the Uxbridge Road a new report published this week claims that bus passengers in London are the least satisfied in the UK.

The Department for Transport (DfT) has published national statistics on passenger satisfaction, bus punctuality and reliability within its quarterly Bus & Light Rails Statistics study. According to the report, passenger satisfaction levels across Metropolitan bus carriers for the period January-March 2006, rated 83 out of 100. In London, however, the level was 78 out of 100. The average across the rest of the UK’s non-metropolitan areas was 80 out of 100. In all cases the satisfaction levels remain unchanged since the previous quarter.

These figures are likely to come as an embarrassment to the Mayor, who has lavished spending on the London Bus network, as well as implementing several controversial policies such as bendy-buses, and scrapping the routemaster services, in an effort to improve services.

Roger Evans AM, London Conservative spokesman for Transport said, “Despite the Mayor pouring a vast amount of resource into London’s bus system, and his much vaunted claims that the network has never had it so good, it appears that the people who really matter – the passengers – do not share his optimism. He has adopted a highly publicised policy of raising expectation, without, its seems, offering much substance to raise satisfaction."

" The alarming rise of anti-social behaviour on the bus network, and the controversy surrounding bendy buses have not helped the situation. These, together with the poor quality of bus driving and the high fare tariffs, all need resolving to if we are to ensure that the Capital has a first class bus service that we can be proud of.”

June 9 2006