Bus Lanes

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Bus Lanes

The first bus lane in the UK was introduced in 1968.

Bus Lanes are intended to give priority to buses, cutting down on journey times where roads are congested with other traffic and increasing the reliability of buses.

MAG campaign for access to bus lanes on the grounds of increased road safety for riders whilst having no adverse impact on bus services or other road users. The first trials for allowing motorcycles to use bus lanes started in 1994, and have gradually spread across the UK, with access now permitted in over 50 local authority areas. However, with access decisions being taken at local level, there is now a situation of major inconsistency across the country, even with an inconsistent approach to access being demonstrated within individual local authorities.


Known Bus Lane Access Locations

The list below is accurate to our knowledge, but if you have knowledge of additional locations, please let us know:

1994 Reading

1995 Bath

1996 Bristol

1996 South Gloucestershire

1996 North Somerset

1998 Hull City Council

1999 Colchester

2000 M4 Bus Lane

2002 Swindon

2003 Kingston

2003 London TLRN

2003 North East Lincolnshire

2003 Sheffield

2004 Belfast

2004 Northern Ireland

2004 Sunderland

2005 Essex

2006 Derby

2006 Westminster

2007 Aylesbury

2007 Birmingham

2007 Plymouth

2008 Buckinghamshire

2009 Hammersmith & Fulham

2010 Bedford

2010 Solihull

2010 Walsall

2011 Leicester

2011 York

2012 Bromley

2012 North Lincolnshire

2013 Merton

2013 Peterborough

2013 Newport (SW)

2014 Coventry

2014 Durham

2014 East Sussex

2014 Edinburgh

2014 Newcastle on Tyne

2014 Darlington

2014 Brighton & Hove

2015 Doncaster

2015 Cardiff

2016 Wakefield

2017 Richmond

2017 Sutton

2017 Waltham Forest

2017 Wandsworth

2018 Calderdale

2018 Newham

2018 Nottingham


Other authorities have agereed in principle in transport plans that access should be granted, but are yet to implement the policy.

MAG Position

MAG believes that motorcycles are a legal mode of transport and as such, their riders are entitled to expect that measures be taken to improve their safety. With over 75 UK transport authorities recognising the sense of PTW access to bus lanes, the momentum of the policy is undeniable.

MAG calls for the Department for Transport to update its guidance for local authorities to make motorcycle access the default position for all bus lanes unless specific reasons for exclusion can be demonstrated.


MAG report: PTW Access to Bus Lanes, October 2018 [1]


Relevant Documents