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Bus Services In Great Britian
Today, bus service provision for public transport in the UK is regulated in a variety of ways. Bus transport in London is regulated by Transport for London. Bus transport in some large conurbations is regulated by Passenger Transport Executives. Bus transport elsewhere in the country must meet the requirements of the local Traffic Commissioner, and run to their registered service. Under the free market, the bar to entry into public bus service operation is aimed to be as low as possible.
Using the example of bus passenger growth seen in London under the changes made by Transport for London, several parties have advocated a return to increased regulation of bus services along the London model.
The Transport Act 2000 made certain provisions for increased cooperation between local authorities and bus operators to take measures to improve services, such cooperation was previously barred under competition law. Under the act, Quality Bus Partnerships were enabled, although this had limited success. In Cardiff, the first Statutory Quality Bus Partnership has been used, with the introduction of new buses on Cardiff Bus routes. The Act also included measures allowing the registration of variable route services, as demand responsive transport.
In 2004, regulations were amended to further allow fully flexible demand responsive transport bus services.While most bus operating companies are private, some are operated as community based or not for profit entities, or as local authority arms length companies, as municipal bus companies.
The majority of bus services in both urban and rural areas are now run by subsidiaries of a few major bus groups, many of which also hold the franchises to many train operating companies and light rail systems.Following the failure of some light rail proposals in some UK towns to gain national funding on the Department of Transport's value for money assessment, several towns have turned to enhanced bus services as a cheaper alternative. Following limited historical use, such as in Runcorn and Birmingham, the use of guided bus technology and bus rapid transit schemes has increased in the UK.
Changes to regulations regarding bus operation are proposed in the 2007 Local Transport Bill.Private use of bus transport in the United Kingdom encompasses tour buses, vehicles for hire, and holiday excursions/package tours.
Interest in preservation of historical buses is maintained in the UK by various museums and heritage/preservation groups, ranging from attempts to restore a single bus, to whole collections. While many preserved buses are vintage, increasingly, 'modern' types, such as the Leyland National, are being preserved. With the fleet replacement of the major groups, it is not uncommon for many preserved buses to still have contemporary models still in service.
The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain - "Wuthering Heights"
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