Bus stopped

The Scottish Government has slashed a full fifth from the bus service operators’ grant (your report, 1 March). This cut will have a disproportionate effect upon the poorest and most vulnerable in society.

Bus fares across Scotland will soar and services will be scaled down as bus companies battle to cut costs. As fuel prices remain at record levels, and as more and more of us are again using public transport, the pressure on bus firms to serve all parts of the country mounts.

Alarmingly, some of the most remote and rural areas of the country could be cut off as less lucrative services are axed, leaving poverty-stricken areas starved of essential services.

Scotland has some of the worst pollution-ridden hotspots in Europe, where thousands of Scots are exposed to dangerous levels of smog. In Glasgow and Edinburgh, incredibly, exhaust emissions persistently breach EU limits.

A widespread switch from oil-hungry private cars to efficient public transport is essential.

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It is therefore all the more bewildering that the Scottish Government – the chief promoter of public transport, has arrived at a decision which will result in bus services facing a Beeching-style cull.

Gordon Barlow

Timmons Park

Lochgelly, Fife