Beith questions Prime Minister on post-16 transport

Sir Alan Beith MP
Sir Alan Beith MP

Sir Alan Beith MP raised the issue of the cuts to post-16 transport funding in Northumberland during Prime Minister’s Questions today.

The Liberal Democrat MP for Berwick said: “Is the Prime Minister aware that 16 to 18-year-olds in Northumberland who may live 50 miles from a further-education college or 20 miles from a high school are facing charges ranging from £600 a year to several thousand pounds a year to get an education, because the Labour-controlled council has reversed the support given by the previous Liberal Democrat administration?

“Will he deplore that decision and see what central Government can do to promote fair access to education?”

Mr Cameron replied: “My right hon. Friend makes an important point. As he knows, responsibility for transport for education and training rests with local authorities. Clearly, this local authority, now controlled by Labour, has made this decision.

“Of course, we have introduced the £180million bursary fund to support the most disadvantaged young people and perhaps that is something that his council and these families could make the most of.

“I certainly join him in agreeing that this is another example of the fact that Labour costs us more.”