London Councils announced last week that they have awarded a five year contract worth £1.8 million for the administration of the Freedom Pass scheme, which serves over 1.2 million London residents.
London Councils claim that this contract “will almost halve the cost of administering the service”.
Following a tendering process, members of London Councils’ Transport and Environment Committee approved the letting of the contract to produce, manage and issue Freedom Passes to ESP Systex Ltd. The new contract is for five years from 1 July 2011 with the option to extend it for up to two more years.
Faryal Velmi, Director of Transport for All has contacted Nick Lester of London Councils to find out how this change will affect service users, and how it will affect the re-issue in 2015.
London boroughs have paid for the Freedom Pass, run on their behalf by London Councils, for more than 20 years and have invested more than £3billion into the scheme during that time. There are currently almost 1.1 million older plus 145,000 disabled Freedom Pass holders.
Chair of London Councils’ Transport and Environment Committee, Councillor Catherine West said: “This single, London-wide contract provides large economies of scale on both the Freedom Pass production and back office service.
“The deal offers substantial savings for London boroughs, especially during the next Freedom Pass reissue in 2015 when the current passes expire.
“Many older and disabled people rely on their Freedom Pass to maintain their independence and boroughs are committed to continuing this cherished service.”