A LABOUR government would introduce free bus travel for people under the age of 25 according to the Shadow Transport Secretary.

Andy McDonald, who is MP for Middlesbrough, was in Worcester meeting the city’s parliamentary candidate Lynn Denham, and spoke of the need to improve transport across the area, also promising to protect free travel for the elderly.

Mr McDonald, 61, said: “The government does not care about buses. 3,000 bus services have been either axed or cut since 2010.

“Fares have gone up but wages have stayed the same, so people are paying more for an inferior services.

“Young people have taken a battering since 2010 with tuition fees and the ending of EMA, so to leave them with additional transport costs is putting a real burden on them. Young people should be able to travel free of charge from the age of 0-25.”

According to Mr McDonald, the money for provision of free travel would come out of money currently earmarked by the government for road-building. He said: “The free travel will cost £1.4 billion - We know exactly where that will come from.

“The conservatives have ring-fenced the vehicle excise duty for cars and said that money to be spent on road-building.

“You cannot road build your way out of a climate emergency.”

Speaking alongside Mr McDonald, Councillor Lynn Denham said: “We have got a petition which will be sending to the county council as part of their consultation into transport.

“Andy found it hard to believe when he arrived here just how poor bus services are in the county whether that is going to and from towns like Upton or going to the hospital, where the time of the last bus home means that people have to curtail visits to their loved ones.”

Worcester’s Conservative MP Robin Walker said that Labour's plans would result in fewer buses or a higher cost to the taxpayer.

He said: "It is an interesting case in point that the only place where buses are run publicly is in Cardiff where the Labour council has actually cut services.

"Labour's model simply doesn't work.

"We have been working to make the roads run better and more efficiently, for example with the works on Croft Road and City Walls Road to improve traffic flow making the buses more viable. "What would happen with Labour's model is either fewer services or a bigger bill for the council tax payer, and I do not think anyone wants that."