'Little prospect' of maintaining fares
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THE pay increase of 3 to 3+ per cent recommended for company busmen by the National Board for Prices and Incomes "would be bound to have the most serious implications for the level of provincial bus fares". This was stated by Mr. R. J. Ellery, chairman of the North Western Road Car Co. Ltd., in Stockport.
Speaking at the annual meeting of the company, he said there was little prospect of North Western being able to defer making an application to increase fares for much longer.
Referring to the "expensive three-year transportation study" that had been started in South-east Lancashire and North-east Cheshire, Mr. Ellery said it must be assumed that the planners believed existing services were neither adequate nor co-ordinated. The facts, he declared, were to the contrary. There had been developed over the past 50 years a pattern of closely knit, co-ordinated services which was quite remarkable.
Mr. Ellery added that "the authorities would, I suggest, do better to concentrate on the problems of congestion and work out measures to create conditions in which a freer movement of buses in this heavily populated area would be possible".
It was too early to say what effect the completion of the Manchester-to-London electrification scheme by British Railways would have on the company's express coach service to the capital. "Whilst the journey time by rail has been considerably reduced, we still have the edge on fares and we are reasonably confident that our many thousands of regular passengers will continue to use the comfortable express coach services".