Subsidised Bus Services

What are subsidised bus services?

Around 90% of public transport in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough is run commercially with no involvement from the Local Authority, with only 10% receiving any form of financial support (or subsidy) from the Combined Authority. Some of the services only receive a partial subsidy, effectively operating commercially when passenger numbers are high, then operating on subsidy outside of these times.

The majority of subsidised services operate in the more rural areas of the county where passenger numbers are low or where the lengths of journey mean that operating costs are high, making the services unviable to operate commercially. On some of these services, the level of subsidy required is over £10 per person for a single trip. This does not represent good value for money, therefore the Combined Authority has to review these contracts.


Ely Zipper Young Persons Pass

The Ely Zipper is a regular daytime service to Ely, including stops at Tesco and Market Square. The bus travels a circular route and passes through Haddenham, Little Thetford, Stretham, Wilburton, and Witcham.

If you are under 21 years old, you may apply for a pass entitling you to unlimited travel on the bus. The pass options are £32.00 for one month or £99.50 for four months. Currently we only accept payment by cheque.

The cheque payment details, and postal address are on the application form below. You will also need to send a COPY of ID as proof of age, with your first application. Alternatively, the application and proof of ID can be emailed to the following email, but the cheque will still need to be posted. If you have any queries, please also email:

Download the ZIPPER Young Persons Pass Application Form


Bus Service Operators Grant (BSOG)

BSOG is a grant paid to operators of eligible bus services and community transport organisations to help them recover some fuel costs. The amount each bus operator receives is based on their annual fuel consumption. The document below features details on how this has been applied across Peterborough and Cambridgeshire.

Find out more about BSOG


Local Transport Authority Covid Bus Service Support Grant

During the Covid pandemic the Department of Transport provided the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority with funding amounting to £809,127 to maintain essential bus services that otherwise would not have operated. The services involved can be found at the below link and the funding enabled 1,402,110 miles to be operated.

See the services here


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