Bus pass amnesty
We recognise that there may still be some pass-holders who currently use more than one pass when they are not supposed to, for example, where the original 'lost' pass has subsequently been found.
An amnesty period will be implemented from 5 January 2015 to 1 February 2015 for people to arrange for a new pass to be issued or return the old pass to Wiltshire Council before the end of the amnesty period. During this time if a pass is shown which is no longer valid, the driver will tell the user that the pass must not be used again but the pass will not be withdrawn, and the user will be able to continue with their journey.
From Monday 2 February 2015, if a ticket machine on the bus confirms that a pass is not valid, it will be withdrawn from use and retained by the bus driver. Where a pass is withdrawn, and the driver is satisfied that the user is the person on the pass, the user will still be allowed to make that journey, although all future journeys will need to be paid for until either the correct pass is used or a new pass issued.
Changes from 1 April 2015
From 1 April 2015, the Wiltshire Bus Pass and the Wiltshire Bus Pass + Companion will give free travel in Wiltshire from 9.30am, Monday to Friday. The passes will continue to give free travel any time at weekends and free travel on late night buses in Wiltshire.
We know many people in very rural areas are concerned that they have so few buses they have to travel before 9.30am as the next one is so much later. To help with this we have decided to make exceptions so that the passes can be used before 9.30am Monday to Friday in some places. A list of these exceptions will be published here before April and subsequently kept up to date as services change.
- Who qualifies for a bus pass?
- What pass options are available?
- How do I apply?
- What if I lose my bus pass?
- List of bus pass restrictions List of bus pass restrictions 55kb
Who qualifies for a bus pass?
- People whose sole or primary residence is Wiltshire and
- Who have reached the qualifying age or
- Are disabled for any of the qualifying reasons shown below
Are you looking for school and college bus passes?
What is my qualifying age?
- If you were born on or before 5 April 1950 your qualifying age is 60.
- If you are born after 5 April 1950 the age of eligibility for concessionary travel in England will be linked to the state pensionable age applying to women.
- The state pensionable age for men and women will have harmonised at 65 by 2020. Beyond 2020 the age of eligibility for concessionary travel will continue to increase in line with any future changes to the state pension age.
Alternatively contact us and we will check for you.
Do I qualify because of my disability?
You qualify if you are within one of the seven categories listed in the Transport Act 2000, as shown below:
- Is blind or partially sighted
- Is profoundly or severely deaf
- Is without speech
- Has a disability, or has suffered an injury, that has a substantial or long-term effect on his ability to walk
- Does not have arms or has long-term loss of use of both arms
- Has a learning disability, that is, a state of arrested or incomplete development of mind which includes significant impairment of intelligence and social functioning
- Would, if they applied for the grant of a licence to drive a motor vehicle under Part 3 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 have their application refused on the grounds of medical fitness. Examples of those who are currently barred are people with, epilepsy, severe mental disorder and liability to sudden attacks of giddiness or fainting
The disability should be permanent or have lasted at least 12 months, be likely to last 12 months or be likely to recur, and should have a substantial effect on the person's ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.
What pass options are available?
The scheme offers three options for getting help with the cost of transport, which will differ depending on your eligibility. You can only choose ONE option.
Option 1 – bus pass
The bus pass provides the pass holder with free off peak travel on registered local bus services anywhere in England, between the hours of 9.30 am and 11 pm Monday to Friday and all day at weekends and bank holidays. Additionally, the Wiltshire Bus Pass also allows free travel at any time on buses in Wiltshire, but there are some bus routes in Wiltshire on which the pass is not accepted before 09.00am.
The bus pass does not cover long distance coach services like National Express. Whilst travel in Wiltshire is free at all times, it is only free for off peak travel as above in Swindon and other bordering areas.
Passes are issued free of charge – however, there is a charge of £5 for duplicate passes when the original is lost or damaged. If your pass is stolen, this charge will be waived when a crime number is provided.
The Wiltshire Bus Pass can be used on all Connect2Wiltshire services and will give either free travel or a cheaper fare, depending on the service. Ask for details when you book (08456 525255).
First Great Western Trains is currently offering bus pass holders a discount of one third off standard off-peak fares between Worcester and Swindon via Stroud, and between Westbury and Weymouth.
Option 2 – bus pass plus companion
This is only issued where a person cannot travel unaided due to a disability. It offers the holder the same free national travel as the bus pass but in addition it allows a companion to travel accompanying the pass holder free of charge in Wiltshire and the adjoining authorities with whom we have a reciprocal agreement. Currently these are Swindon, Hampshire, Dorset, Somerset, Bath & North East Somerset, South Gloucestershire, Bristol and North Somerset.
See how to apply below for evidence to be supplied to qualify for this pass.
Option 3 – taxi vouchers
As an alternative to the Wiltshire Bus Pass, Taxi vouchers to the value of £40 for the full year can be claimed by those people who use a wheelchair for most of their day-to-day activities and expect this to continue permanently
People who choose taxi vouchers will not be able to change their travel concession until invitation to renew, the following April.
On first application a reduced value of vouchers may be issued for the part-year as follows: 1 July to 30 September - £30, 1 October to 31 December - £20, 1 January to 31 March - £10.
How do I apply?
Alternatively, application forms are available at Wiltshire Council Offices.
Applications can be posted to us at the contact address below or handed in at Wiltshire Council Offices. However we receive your application, your pass or vouchers will be posted to you. You should allow up to 10 working days for your pass to be ordered, manufactured and posted to you.”
Don’t forget you must include copies of the documents listed on the application form as proof of residence and age or disability along with your application form. Please do not send original documents. You must also enclose a recent passport-style photo. Please write your name and post code on the back of the photo.
What must I include with my application form?
1. All applicants must include a passport style photograph with your name and post code clearly written on the back in block capitals.
2. All applicants must include evidence of permanent residence in Wiltshire; we will accept a current copy of one of the following:
- Council tax bill
- Electoral registration
- Mooring licence
- TV licence
- Landline phone bill
- Driving licence (driving licence can only be used as evidence as proof of age OR proof of residence, not both)
3. All applicants must include evidence of age. We will accept a copy of one of the following:
- State pension entitlement letter
- Birth certificate
- Driving licence (driving licence can only be used as evidence of proof of age OR proof of residence, not both)
4. If you are applying for the Wiltshire Bus Pass because of disability you must include recent evidence of disability. We will accept a copy of one of the following:
- Disability Living Allowance letter showing the higher rate mobility component and eligibility dates.
- Personal Independence Payment (PIP) award letter showing a score of eight points or more from moving around activity or communicating verbally activity”
- War Pensioner's Mobility Supplement award letter
- A letter from the Service Personnel and Veterans Agency stating that you have been certified to have “a permanent and substantial disability which causes inability to walk or very considerable difficulty in walking.”
- Blue Badge (showing number, expiry date and photograph)
- A copy of your latest audio graph showing your hearing falls between 70-95 dBHL or it reaches 95+ dBHL
- Evidence of registration with other bodies, such as the RNIB
- Evidence of registration with social service under the Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act
- Recent evidence from the DVLA that a driving licence has been refused or revoked. This does not include those who have had their licence refused/revoked through misuse of alcohol or drugs.
It is likely that the majority of service personnel and veterans who have received compensation for an injury in tariffs 1 – 8 of the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS) will be eligible for a Wiltshire Bus Pass because of their disability. Please send a copy of your “Reason for Decision” letter from the Service Personnel and Veterans Agency so that we can assess your eligibility.
If you are unable to provide evidence as above we will consider an explanation of how you qualify under the seven categories mentioned previously from a social worker or other official body, which must be on the relevant official headed paper and signed by a qualified official in support of your application.
5. If you are applying for The Wiltshire Bus Pass plus Companion because of disability you must include evidence of disability.
“The evidence of disability must show one of the following:
- DLA higher rate mobility component and eligibility dates
- PIP score of 12 points in the Moving Around activity, or 8 points and above in the Communicating Verbally activity
- Evidence of registration as blind
- A copy of your latest audio graph showing your hearing reaches 95+dBHL
- PIP score of 12 points in the Planning and Following Journeys activity in addition to separate evidence that you are eligible for a bus pass as per paragraph 4 above”
If you are unable to provide evidence of high rate mobility component Disability Living Allowance award letter we will consider an explanation of how you qualify from a doctor or social worker on official headed paper, signed by a qualified official in support of your application.
6. If you are applying for taxi vouchers you must sign the declaration headed “for taxi voucher applicants only."
What if I lose my bus pass?
If you lose your bus pass and can’t find it again let us know. There is a charge of £5 for a replacement bus pass when the original is lost or damaged. If your pass is stolen, this charge will be waived when a crime reference number is provided.
Lost taxi vouchers will not be replaced.
- Your bus pass explained Your bus pass explained 1014kb
- List of bus pass restrictions List of bus pass restrictions 55kb
Last updated: 8 January 2015