Families will be aware that the abolition of the ‘Your Staffordshire card’ will impact on the cost of bus travel when it runs out on 31 August 2019. More details can be seen on our article from a couple of weeks ago:

http://www.friaryschool.com/2018/11/12/end-of-your-staffordshire-card-will-increase-transport-costs/

We are also aware that other local schools are proposing the running of discounted bus schemes which, whilst potentially a good idea, are likely to prove dearer than using existing transport if you know where to look. The prices mentioned elsewhere range from £16 to £25 per week.

We wanted to check out the facts so have dug around the bus company websites and Staffordshire County Council offices to get to the bottom of the new arrangements.

Free Bus Pass:

Staffordshire County have reiterated that anyone who qualifies for a free bus pass now will continue to do so next academic year.

Arriva (825) to  Rugeley, Armitage & Handsacre

Arriva – the company which provides the 825 to Rugeley, Armitage and Handsacre – offer discounted tickets if you buy weekly or even annual passes via their website:

https://tickets.arrivabus.co.uk/midlands/west-midlands/?_ga=2.123575183.563853577.1543306221-963270242.1543306221

Arriva Child Day Pass – £4.10 per day – this would work out as £20.50 per week or £779.00 per year.

Arriva Child Weekly Pass – £18.00 – this would work out as £684 per year or £3.60 per day

Arriva Child Annual Pass – £530.00 – this works out as £13.95 per week or £2.78 per day.

There are also Arriva Child Term Passes which vary in cost depending on the length of the term but are available on the same website link.

The disadvantage with the Child Annual Passes is that they are a one-off payment, the advantage is that they are usually cheaper and cover weekends and the holidays too (as does the Term Pass).

Midland Classic (810, 811 & 819):

Midland Classic – the company that provides the 810 and 811 to Fradley and the 819 to Hill Ridware – also offer discounted tickets via their website:

http://www.midlandclassic.com/bus-passes/

Midland Classic Daily Ticket – £3.50 – this would work out as £17.50 per week or £665.00 per year.

Midland Classic Weekly Ticket – £12.00 – this would work out as £456.00 per year or £2.40 per day.

Midland Classic Monthly Ticket – £40.00  – this works out as (roughly) £400.00  per year or £10.00  per week or £2.00 per day

These three tickets can be bought from the bus driver – though Sixth Formers must show a valid student ID Card (with an expiry date) which they should keep with them for future inspection.

Midland Classic Termly Pass – £175.00 – this works out  as £525.00 per year

Midland Classic Annual Pass – £494.00 – this works out as £13.00 per week or £2.60 per day.

The best option with Midland Classic seems to be the monthly pass as it comes in at £10 per week.

Matt Allman, Headteacher, said: “We appreciate that though the cost of the bus fare is not the main reason for choosing a school, family finances are very important, and we are glad to be able to offer some realistic guidance for September 2019 onwards. The demise of the ‘Your Staffordshire’ card is a worry and it is important that families can plan and prepare for the changes with an accurate idea of the costs of public transport. We would advise all parents to look at these figures and plan in advance so they can get the best deals.”

If you have any further queries about bus transport to and from The Friary School, then please email office@friaryschool.com or call main reception on 01543 267 400.