Shropshire

Plans to slash travel subsidy for Shropshire students

Parents in Shropshire will have to pay hundreds of pounds more for students' subsidised bus and rail passes under fresh plans.

In 2010 the passes for 16 to 18-year-olds cost £262 annually per child.

But Shropshire Council increased this to £550 last year and is now proposing to increase it again so that parents contribute £900 a year.

Some fear it could put young people off college education but the council said the passes remained good value.

'Valuable scheme'

Church Stretton School head teacher Steve Lunt said: "My concern is that this kind of an increase means that, for some parents, access will be denied."

Shropshire Council said it had to save £80m over the next three years.

It said there would be were reduced charges for families on lower incomes and stressed no decision had been made.

A statement said: "This is an important and valuable scheme - and proposing to reduce the subsidy for students and parents isn't something we've considered lightly, and we're sensitive to the needs of our local communities.

"However, along with councils across the region and the country, Shropshire Council is having to make significant savings."

A decision is expected later this month.

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