TWO-thirds of councils could axe bus services, but a special campaign has been launched to deter them.

Save Our Buses, a national campaign to protect local bus services, is being launched on Thursday, February #, by sustainable transport group Campaign for Better Transport.

The campaign is in response to unprecedented cuts to council transport spending, which will leave many parts of the country without any form of public transport.

Figures revealed by the Save Our Buses campaign show that 70 per cent of local authorities plan major cuts to their bus budgets, with some councils planning to cut all their supported bus services and 14 councils cutting support by more than £1m each.

Buses are vital to the economy and account for two-thirds of public transport journeys. They are especially important to people on low incomes, job seekers, the elderly, young people, disabled people and those without access to a car. Save Our Buses argues that cuts on this scale are counter productive and will actually hold back the economy, obstruct the delivery of other public services, reduce employment opportunities and magnify social problems.

Stephen Joseph, Campaign for Better Transport’s chief executive, said: “The Government said that spending cuts would be socially fair, but cuts to bus services will hit the poorest and most vulnerable hardest.

“We believe any short-term savings will be outweighed by the long term cost of a vastly-depleted bus network. These unprecedented cuts will be especially disastrous for people on low incomes and could effectively mean the death of rural bus services.

“Politicians must consider the consequences.”