Lib Dem County Councillor Stephen Robinson has kindly sent us the following information:-
From 1 October 2012, residents applying for a bus pass for the first time or looking to replace their lost or broken pass will need to apply to Essex County Council instead of their local District, Borough or City Council*. This is because there is now one centralised system for processing applications and replacements.
Applications should be completed in full and posted to : Essex ENCTS Bus Pass, PO Box 212, Waterlooville, PO7 6ZN. Application forms are available via
· downloading at www.canigetapass.org.uk
· calling 0845 200 0388 (residents can also request assistance completing the form by calling this number)
· collecting from their local library
If residents already have a bus pass and it is due for renewal, provided they are at the same address they will be sent a new pass automatically. However, if they have changed address, they need to let Essex County Council know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 0845 200 0388. If they have lost their pass they can arrange a replacement by calling 0845 200 0388.
Please note, the changes are to the application process only, not to entitlement or service hours. In Essex, eligible older and disabled people are entitled to a bus pass which allows for free bus travel between 9am and midnight Monday to Friday and all day at weekends and Bank Holidays. Companion passes are also available for disabled pass holders who require regular assistance.
In order to raise awareness of the new process and to ensure customers are directed to the right point of contact in the first instance the changes to the administration of the scheme will be promoted county wide. This will primarily consist of engagement with relevant partners and organisations such as GP surgeries, bus operators, District, Borough and City, Parish and Town Councils. This will be further supported by posters in libraries (where customers can also collect an application form), as well as advertising on local radio, bus shelters and in local newspapers.
For more information about the changes to the application process or to check eligibility for a bus pass visit www.canigetapass.org.uk or call 0845 200 0388.
*This does not apply to Southend-on-Sea Borough Council and Thurrock Council.
Changes to the application process for bus passes – Frequently Asked Questions
What is changing?
We are changing the way we process application forms for English National Concessionary Travel, consolidating the 12 administrative systems that are currently in operation across Essex into one centralised system. This has no impact on the times passes can be used and pass holders are still entitled to free travel between 9am and midnight from Monday to Friday and all day at weekends and on bank holidays.
Who is eligible for a pass?
Men and women who are at the female age of retirement-age can apply for a bus pass. Also, disabled people can apply if they meet the entitlement criteria outlined by the Government, you can find out more about this at www.directgov.co.uk
Can I get an application form in my local council office?
Yes. If you need assistance completing the form, you will need to contact Essex County Council. We can also help you to complete the form over the phone. You can contact us by calling 0845 200 0388.
Where else can I collect a form from?
You can download a copy of the application form online atwww.canigetapass.org or collect one at Essex libraries and through Essex County Council offices.
How long is the application process?
Application forms sent to us will be processed within two working days and you can expect to receive your pass within 10 working days
The return address on the form has a PO7 post code – is this correct?
Yes. The application processing centre is in Portsmouth.
I have a question – can I see someone?
Later on in 2012, we will be running ‘road shows’ around the County to enable people to ask questions. However, in the meantime you can contact us by calling 0845 200 0388 or by email@example.com
I have a disability – is the application process the same for me?
Yes. However, we are introducing a separate form for disabled people to give more information around who qualifies and under what criteria.
What if I am hearing impaired?
We have a minicom service – 0845 200 1424,
Skype – EssexBusPass
or Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We can also write to you in a format you prefer.
What if I am or am helping someone who is sight impaired?
We can phone or communicate using audio CD or MP3. We will also complete the application for you over the phone and send it to you with markers to attach the photo, evidence of who you are and where to sign. To access this service, call 0845 200 0388
What if I move out of Essex or no longer require the pass?
If you have moved within Essex (but not to Southend or Thurrock), your pass is still valid. If you move to any other county, Southend or Thurrock, you will need to apply for a new pass from your new Local Authority and return your old one to us.
If you have moved or no longer require the pass, please let us know so we can remove your details from the system.
What if someone has passed away – what should I do?
Please contact us.
Can I apply for a bus pass online?
Not at the moment but we are working to develop this in the future
My pass will expire in March 2013 – what should I do?
You do not need to do anything unless you have moved. If you have moved to another county, Southend or Thurrock since you received your current pass you need to return your pass to us and apply for a new one from your Local Authority. If you have moved within Essex, please tell us as soon as possible, so that we can update our records to send your new bus pass to the correct address.