Consultation on concessionary rail travel for older people

Closed 4 Dec 2019

Opened 24 Oct 2019


Like most councils across the county, we are facing significant financial pressures with reduced funding from central government and increasing demand on our services. This means we have to make some difficult decisions about how we use the limited resources we have.

Central government provides councils with some funding so that qualifying older and disabled people can travel for free on buses after 9.30am and before 11pm during the week, and all day at weekends and on public holidays. This is known as the English National Concessionary Travel Scheme (ENCTS) or 'free bus pass' scheme. This will not be affected by this consultation.

What is additionally offered in West Sussex?

West Sussex County Council currently provides extra funding to offer the following additions to the national scheme in West Sussex:

  • Free travel on buses at any time for Disabled Bus Pass holders
  • Companion Passes so that qualifying pass holders who need help to travel can take someone with them who can travel for free as well
  • A free Disabled Person's Railcard instead of the Disabled Person's Bus Pass
  • A free Senior Railcard instead of the Older Person's Bus Pass

Most other councils do not provide additional funding to support their concessionary travel schemes.

What is the proposed change?

  • To no longer provide a free Senior Railcard instead of the Older Person's Bus Pass

No other changes are proposed. This means that the additional benefits for qualifying disabled people will remain as part of the concessionary travel scheme in West Sussex. By removing the Senior Railcard option from the scheme, the County Council could make savings of up to £50,000 per year.  


Why We Are Consulting

Before any decisions are made, we are keen to gather feedback from passengers and others to help us understand the impact of our proposal.

Please provide your feedback by completing our online survey below.

Alternatively, the survey is also available to download and print below.

If you would like help completing this survey, or alternative formats, then please email or call 01243 642105.

If you are deaf or have difficulty hearing you can contact us via NGT Text Relay 18001 01243 642105 providing you have this app downloaded onto your PC, laptop or smartphone.

What happens next

The Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport is expected to make a decision on the proposed change to the scheme in January 2020.


  • All Areas


  • Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) Groups
  • Children
  • Disabled People
  • Faith Groups
  • Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transexual (LGBT) Groups
  • Older People
  • People in marriages & civil partnerships
  • Pregnancy & Maternity
  • Young People
  • Young People Aged 18+
  • Gender Groups
  • Anyone aged 18 or over
  • NHS
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  • Patients
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  • Residents e-Panel
  • Teachers
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  • West Sussex County Council Staff
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  • Voluntary Organisations
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  • All West Sussex Businesses
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  • Concessionary Travel
  • Trains
  • Transport