PENSIONERS in West Dorset could face losing concessionary bus travel before 9.30am.

Dorset County Council has provided concessionary travel for the elderly after 9.30am while the district council has supplemented the scheme by providing free travel earlier in the day.

However, with the county council due to renew all bus passes in April next year, West Dorset District Council is to go out to consultation with service users over whether to continue its funding of the pre-9.30am services.

Director for corporate services Adrian Stuart told a meeting of the district council’s executive committee that the funding concessionary bus fares prior to 9.30am over the next five years was expected to cost £46,000 per year and that figure could rise.

He said the authority now needed to consult with service users to discover what the impact would be if provision was withdrawn. As part of the original agreement Dorset County Council currently funds journeys before 9.30am in rural areas where those eligible for concessionary travel do not have another option before 10.30am.