Bee Network moves step closer as plans agreed for lower fares and new electric buses in Wigan

Lower fares and zero-emission buses look set to be on the way for Wigan passengers.

Greater Manchester’s leaders agreed a report today which will see new prices introduced from September 4, after the plan was brought forward due to the cost-of-living crisis.

They also agreed to allocate funding for 220 zero-emission buses, with 50 to be in operation in Wigan and Bolton by September next year, and a further 170 – purchased alongside funding from Stagecoach – to operate in the south of Greater Manchester by 2024. 

The scheme is part of the Bee Network – Greater Manchester leaders’ vision for a more integrated, London-style public transport system.

Andy Burnham Mayor of Greater Manchester

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The announcement comes just days after the Court of Appeal upheld the High Court decision that the Mayor of Greater Manchester’s decision to implement a bus franchising scheme across the city-region was lawfully carried out, as were all other aspects of the franchising process.

Mayor Andy Burnham said: “I am delighted that we are setting the wheels in motion to start delivering on our transformative Bee Network vision. 

“Not only is this really important in the current cost-of-living crisis, it also signifies the first major step towards a transport system that is greener, better integrated, more accessible and more affordable.  

 “Alongside investment in infrastructure, we will provide better access to jobs and essential services and make a major contribution to improving the quality of life for all our residents, particularly the third of households who do not have access to a car.”