THE transport authority that runs Glasgow’s Subway has warned it is facing a shortfall of up to £20million caused by heavy passenger losses during the pandemic lockdown.

Strathclyde Partnership for Transport said Transport Scotland had failed to offer any financial assistance while private bus and rail operations had been given government aid.

SPT said it gets most of its revenue from the Subway and had reported a 97% drop in passenger numbers by March 30. It has continued to operate daily services for key workers.

According to the transport authority, the Subway and Edinburgh Trams are the only modes of public transport not to have received financial support from Transport Scotland. 

A report states that within the first 12 weeks of lockdown, SPT  highlighted a potential deficit of between £5.6 million and £9 million. 

In addition to falling income generated by the Subway, it has also seen a reduction in income from bus station departure charges, advertising income and ancillary fees. 

SPT is to hold crunch talks on Friday to discuss future financial stability.

Dr Martin Bartos, chairman of SPT said: “Not a day has gone by when the Subway hasn’t operated and we’ve followed government’s lead on doing so safely for staff and passengers. 

“Most of our revenue comes from Subway income which is directly related to passenger numbers. The situation was highlighted to Transport Scotland as early as 30 March by which time we’d already experienced a 97% fall in passenger journeys.

“Now, depending on how much longer lockdown and distancing restrictions need to remain in place, SPT has identified a potential deficit of between £12.5million and £20million for the current financial year.

“Meantime we’ve watched two rounds of government financial support announcements for private bus companies; we’ve seen government stepping in to take on heavy rail losses and we’ve even seen UK government supporting London Underground and light rail across England. 

“Unfortunately we’ve seen not a penny in COVID-19 support come to SPT to help either our bus or Subway efforts. 

“We’ve been left without the slightest indication from Transport Scotland or the Cabinet Secretary about when SPT might see any actual financial support which recognises the huge losses incurred as our staff have done their bit.”