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Bus pass restrictions lifted so older shoppers can make early morning shopping times

PUBLISHED: 16:41 19 March 2020 | UPDATED: 16:41 19 March 2020

People were queuing at 6am to get into Tesco Extra at the Copdock Interchange this morning. Picture: HOLLY HUME

People were queuing at 6am to get into Tesco Extra at the Copdock Interchange this morning. Picture: HOLLY HUME

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Time restrictions on bus passes for older and disabled people have been lifted during the COVID-19 crisis.

Andrew Reid, cabinet member for highways, transport and rural affairs at Suffolk County Council said the move would allow older people to make the dedicated shopping times early in the morning offered by supermarkets. Picture: SIMON LEEAndrew Reid, cabinet member for highways, transport and rural affairs at Suffolk County Council said the move would allow older people to make the dedicated shopping times early in the morning offered by supermarkets. Picture: SIMON LEE

Suffolk County Council has agreed to relax the conditions on bus pass use from 9.30am, as many supermarkets are offering pensioner-only shopping slots early in the morning to ensure they can get supplies.

MORE: Follow the Suffolk Coronavirus Facebook page for the latest updates

That meant many people who wanted to take advantage of the early shopping slots could not make it to their stores in time.

It comes in response to the panic buying seen nationally in which key items such as toilet roll, tissues, rice, pasta and canned food has been harder to obtain because of shoppers hoarding food.

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Councillor Andrew Reid, Suffolk County Council cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “I’m very grateful to our bus companies in Suffolk who have worked with us to extend the use of bus passes on their services before 9.30am.

“This is something that will be extremely helpful during a time when some shops are opening for periods specifically for the older generation and the most vulnerable to support them during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

MORE: Queuing customers in Suffolk for supermarket stores

“This change will come into force on Friday morning [March 20] and I’m very happy we have been able to support those in our community during this period of disruption.”

It is understood this measure will be in place for as long as is necessary, and is to be monitored as the coronavirus situation progresses.”

Bookmark the coronavirus topic page on the EADT website to keep abreast of COVID-19 news in Suffolk.


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