MORE buses are being introduced on routes around Keighley.

Timetable changes which take effect on Sunday (May 15) mean that on parts of the network, the number of buses will be doubled.

The move by Keighley Bus Company coincides with an announcement from West Yorkshire's mayor, Tracy Brabin, that people across the region would be asked which areas are most in need of new bus routes as part of a £25m investment in services.

And she revealed that from September, subject to approval from the Department for Transport, there will be a £2 cap on single-journey bus fares in the region – plus multi-operator DaySaver tickets available through the MCard app and smartcard will be reduced from £5.50 to £4.50.

Ms Brabin said: "I promised to make buses cheaper and greener, and by reducing fares we help with the cost of living crisis.

"The first and most important thing we can do is to re-introduce routes. We need to do as much as we can to improve the network, so we'll be going out to the public in the summer to ask them what routes they want to see."

In relation to whether the fund would go towards replacing lost routes or introducing entirely new ones, she added: "It is all open for discussion. Things have changed because of Covid, and there are new communities that may not be served by a bus route.

"The problem has been that bus companies are run for a profit. The idea that a bus can be a social lifeline has not been a priority."

West Yorkshire Combined Authority submitted its Bus Service Improvement Plan to the Government earlier this year, saying £168m was needed to transform local services. But it received much less.

Referring to the shortfall in funding, Ms Brabin said: "We had a transformational plan that we sent to Government, but we didn't get the full amount. Now we have to manage with the funding pot we have."

Keighley Bus Company's chief executive officer, Alex Hornby, said the firm was "proud" to be part of a partnership working to improve services.

He added: "West Yorkshire's bus operators are working together with the mayor to deliver these positive improvements for customers.

"Our partnership with Metro in West Yorkshire is also delivering more buses on our popular Keighley network, building on the multi-million pound investment by Transdev in new, low-emission buses for our town. Several areas will see increased timetables with up to double the number of buses on selected routes."