PENSIONERS and disabled people wanting paper copies of the re-application form for their bus passes will now have easier access to them.

On September 11, Transport for Wales (TfW) started accepting re-applications for bus passes, with all green coloured bus passes being replaced by Concessionary Travel Cards.

People have until December 31 to reapply for their pass, but concerns had been raised by charity Age Cymru and the Older People's Commissioner Office for elderly people who feel uncomfortable using the internet, or do not have access to.

Transport for Wales said its absolute priority is to ensure people have the fastest and most convenient options for renewing their bus passes. It said having listened to feedback from their partners in Age Cymru and the Older People’s Commissioner’s Office it's making sure people can get application forms easily.

Applications forms are being distributed from mid next week to those that have already requested them, and there is already a PDF version available on TfW’s website, to allow people to print them at home. Paper forms are also being distributed to all local councils so that people can pick them up in their local communities.

James Price, chief executive of Transport for Wales, said: “We’re working with Age Cymru and the Older Person’s Commissioner to make sure we offer the right level of support for those most in need. The feedback has been that paper copies of the application remain in high demand.

"Paper copies have always been an option for people to apply and available by contacting our help desk. However, taking on the concerns that we’ve heard from older people this week, we’re making sure that copies are available from local councils, such as libraries and community hubs and people can download a copy from our website”.

Age Cymru’s Victoria Lloyd said: “At this stage we would urge older people not to panic about renewing their passes. The deadline is not until 31 December so there is plenty of time to make the application. "We are pleased that Transport for Wales will be making paper versions of the application forms available in each local authority in Wales as well as with a number of charities supporting older people. If anyone is worried about making an application, help and support is available from the Transport for Wales helpline or other support agencies.”

TfW's web portal crashed as people flooded to the site to renew their pass, and TfW has said the webpage has been taken down to allow it to increase the capacity of the website significantly so that the online service can be resumed as soon as possible.

In the meantime, Transport for Wales is thanking people for their patience and advising them not to worry as there is no urgent need to renew.