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Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin has announced that hundreds of vital community groups from across the country will receive additional support. £25 million will be made available to provide hundreds of new minibuses to community transport operators in rural and isolated areas.

The scheme will support voluntary organisations as they provide vital services for people in rural communities with limited transport choices.

The new fund means that organisations who already provide a service to the local community can bid for a minibus. Smaller operators and those who help out in rural areas will be favoured in the scheme.

Announcing the scheme Patrick McLoughlin said:

As a rural MP I know how important community bus providers are and how much they matter. These groups help keep rural communities alive and independent.

We want to do all we can to support local voluntary operators who help out in these areas. This large amount of money is to help those who already do so much to support their community.

The fund is focused on existing voluntary and third sector organisations that already have a permit to run not-for-profit services of benefit to the local community. Read the Governments full announcement.

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