Concessionary travel decision upheld.
Timothy Corner QC represented Essex County Council as interested party in R (First Essex Buses) v Secretary of State for Transport  EWHC 3024 Admin, which raised important questions of local authority powers in the public transport field, statutory construction and human rights. The local authority had determined sums due to the claimant bus operator as reimbursement for providing travel concessions to the elderly and disabled under the Transport Acts 1985 and 2000. On the operator’s application for variation of the arrangements the Secretary of State directed some changes and remitted the matter for further decision to the local authority. Sir Thayne Forbes, accepting the local authority’s submissions, held that the Secretary of State’s decision was final rather than interim and that leaving the final calculation to the local authority in this way did not infringe Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights.