Concessionary bus passes for people with arthritis.

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Melanie17
Melanie17 Member Posts: 67
edited 20. Oct 2016, 12:05 in Living with Arthritis archive
I know this has been raised before but I would like to mention this again and I would encourage sufferers to apply for a free bus pass.I read that it is possible to get a free pass(really worth having.Free travel within England on all local bus services,including London buses).I have a diagnosis of psoriatic arthritis and made an appointment to see my favourite doctor.I explained my predicament to him and he asked me a few questions.He then gave me a letter which I sent off to my authority along with an application form for a concessionary bus pass.My doctor must have been in a good mood because he didn't charge me for the letter.To my surprise,a concessionary pass was sent to me,valid for 5 years.I am not on benefits,nor am I of pensionable age.The pass has been granted purely due to my arthritis.I didn't expect it because my authority is supposedly super strapped for cash.This pass has made a huge difference to my life and means I can get about,when well enough,without worrying about the cost of travel,and especially as I had to stop driving.

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  • pot80
    pot80 Member Posts: 109
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Good for you. "Seek and ye shall find"
  • theresak
    theresak Member Posts: 1,998
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I qualify for a concessionary pass due to age, but thank you for letting us know - I'm sure some people will find it helpful.
  • MaggieCowell
    MaggieCowell Member Posts: 5
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    This is really good and i would apply but i cant walk far enough to get to a bus stop and even id i could i wouldn't be able to walk around the town or wherever however, it is a brilliant scheme for those that can use it.


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  • Melanie17
    Melanie17 Member Posts: 67
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Sharon-as far as I know,this is not widely known and I have NEVER seen it advertised anywhere.The significant factor in getting the pass is one's mobility as in how far a person can walk without having to take a break.I think that the benchmark may be 50 yardsi.e can you walk for 50 yards unaided without stopping.If you cannot,the doctor will write the letter to say this,(look under your Local Authority on Google,then look under concessionary bus passes)then take the letter away,and send it off with an application form to the correct address.This applies to people of all ages,as the basis for granting the pass is on the grounds of reduced mobility.It is not at all age or means tested.Personally,after giving up driving after 40 plus years,it has been tremendous.I sold my car because I had to accept that my arthritis had rendered me an unsafe driver.I would urge you all to apply for this pass if you cannot drive but also cannot afford to get around by bus if you are able.
  • GraceB
    GraceB Member Posts: 1,595
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I have a Disabled Person's Bus Pass. I qualified for this as I have the high rate mobility element of DLA (Disability Living Allowance). I've had this quite a number of years now. Some friends of mine with disabilities didn't know they could apply until I told them. They now have their own passes.

    Always good to share information though so very useful post. Thank you.

    GraceB
    Turn a negative into a positive!
  • Melanie17
    Melanie17 Member Posts: 67
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Thanks Grace B.It's great that you have spread the word.And these free bus passes are not only for folks on DLA or PIP.I haven't claimed DLA or PIP and I got a free pass.Also,as you likely know,it's not just for people with arthritis.It's based on mobility,whatever the cause of immobility may be.Don't want to go on too much,but this alone has changed things so much for me.Sometimes in the summer I go on trips along the coast,and don't even get off the bus on a bad day!Just go on a round trip! :cheers:
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 3,635
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Melanie,
    I have done a quick Google search to find out more about these bus passes, and yes indeed the information is there if you take enough time to find it.
    I shall be passing on this information to the rest of the communications team, as I think this it is essential that we make this information more freely available. I'm delighted that this has made such a big difference to you, it is lovely to go for trips round the coast, and as you say on a bad day you can just do a round trip and enjoy the scenery.
    Thank you for this important piece of information.
    Best wishes
    Sharon
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,732
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I've just discovered, thanks to Melanie's thread, there wre concessions 8n rail travel too https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/parking-driving-transport/parking-driving-transport/help-for-disabled-travellers/help-with-the-cost-of-transport-if-youre-disabled/

    (Sorry for the long link.)
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • Melanie17
    Melanie17 Member Posts: 67
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Many thanks Sharon for researching this and confirming it all to be correct.This has given it validation,as I am particularly keen to get the message through to people like me,who bang on,
    'I've worked all my life,paid my taxes,and can't get anything'.Well you can-a free bus pass.
    On the front of my pass is written 'Concessionary travel funded by HM Government with your local authority'.So it is a government backed,nationwide scheme.I would imagine then,that all the Local Authorities use the same benchmark criteria to grant them.Also,N.B.IF YOU FILL IN THE APPLICATION FORM APPROPRIATELY,THE PASS CAN INCLUDE A COMPANION.i didn't ask for this,'cos at the moment I can hobble on and hobble off on my own.This means that you will both travel free.So;

    1.Find out who your local travel authority is and look at their website searching for 'concessionary bus passes'
    2.Are you entitled to one?If so,write down what is required,as per the website.This usually will be how far you can walk without stopping but please check.Ask for an application form and also note down the address.I repeat-it is not means tested,or based on age,or receiving benefits.
    3.See your doctor and ask him for a letter and send the letter off with your application form.Give your GP the appropriate address(address of local authority department,not your address).It is important that your GP writes the correct thing in the letter so if necessary tell him what to write in accordance with what the criteria are.My GP knew exactly what was required so he must be used to such requests.As this scheme is poorly,if at all,publicised,that really surprised me.Oh-last thing.The pass is free(both for you,and a potential companion) but you will have to send a passport size photo of yourself.GOOD LUCK
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Thank you for this thread because it has made me think. Come early December we will travel to London for a wedding, which is being held on the same date as my parents' back in 1945. Our accommodation is sorted but parking etc. remains a logistical nightmare as does the wedding venue which is in Hackney. I will investigate the rail option, Mr DD thinks it the way to go (and I agree) but if I can get my ticket cheaper there's nowt wrong with that! DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben