RURAL bus services have been scrutinised by some of the youngest members of the community, after a debate about the ways that youth fares are set throughout the county.

Wiltshire Assembly of Youth raised issues about bus services for young people, including differing price fares from different companies and problems with not enough buses during busy times as they tried to get to school or college.

Wiltshire Council published information about how and why fares were calculated differently by different bus companies and revealed that supplementing bus services cost the council £5million every year.

Council run bus services account for around half of all bus services in Wiltshire.

Issues raised included the lack of buses during peak times as children and teenagers go to school and college, but Wiltshire Council said that putting on another bus during these busy periods was “not an option” as buses cost £200,000 a year to maintain and would not bring in enough revenue.

The report stated: “Wiltshire is an area of almost full employment and bus companies find it hard to attract drivers, which is an additional constraint when planning bus services. In many ways, a lack of capacity at peak times and the lack of discounts for students travelling to sixth form/college are the opposite ends of the same problem.”

The issue is due to be discussed at the next Children’s Select Committee meeting on Tuesday morning at County Hall