In an open letter to the under-secretary of state, Luke Hall MP, Bus Users has issued an urgent plea to government to protect the UK’s coach industry.
Bus Users chief executive Claire Walters’ letter says: “Millions of UK residents take holidays, day trips and short breaks by coach every year to a wide range of attractions and cities in the UK. Others travel overseas by coach and millions of overseas tourists also come to the UK and use coaches to tour around the many historical sites and cities.
These trips ensure that tourist attractions and important cities and towns receive the economic benefits that such visits bring, as well as helping the visitor to enjoy all that the UK has to offer.
“We need there to be a viable coach industry on the other side of this crisis. Losing such businesses would disproportionately impact on older and more vulnerable members of our society so I would ask you to urgently reconsider the stated position that coaches do not form part of the leisure industry and allow coach operators to receive appropriate support from government sources.
Theatres, museums, country parks, National Trust properties, sporting events and so on all rely on a steady stream of coach parties to keep their businesses thriving.
In sum, coach tourism is worth £7billion per year to the UK economy.”