Labour is announcing that they will provide free bus travel to under 25s, the research done by the party claim that this could create annual saving of around £276 million a year, as well as providing vital public services for young workers. Meanwhile, a few days ago, British Gas announced that they would be hiking Prices for their standard variable tariff by 5.5 percent.

These announcements have come in between the furore over Syria, which provides the government a perfect distraction, so that failure over the election pledge to freeze energy prices goes unnoticed.

Bus fares and energy prices

Jeremy Corbyn will be announcing that millions of people will get free bus travel, the policy pledge will see up to 13 million young people be eligible for free bus travel. The details of the policy are that it will apply to those aged under 25, and there will be certain conditions dependant on how local councils act. The funds would be made available to local councils if they introduce bus franchising, which is similar to that of London, or move to public ownership of the services. Corbyn hopes this will incentivise local authorities to ensure local bus services are run for people not profit. The policy will help young people save up to £1,000 a year each and be paid for using money ring-fenced from Vehicle Excise Duty.

Millions of British Gas customers will see their energy bills rise by 5.5% to an average £1,161 a year (this represents a £60 a year rise), sparking criticism from the government and consumer groups. The biggest household gas and electricity supplier said it was "reluctantly" announcing the price increase of an average 5.5% for a typical dual fuel customer.

The UK’s biggest energy supplier blamed the hike on rising wholesale gas and electricity prices, and government policies such as renewable energy subsidies, which are paid through energy bills. This will see 4.1 million households affected from the end of May. Critics have cited Theresa May’s election pledge to cap energy bills to highlight the continuing failures of the government, they just need some kind of distraction, like a war perhaps?