An illustration of a modern bus and a sleek train racing side-by-side through a scenic English countryside, featuring rolling green hills and traditional flora. The bus travels on a winding road while the train speeds along a parallel railway track.

Travel Concessions for Blind and Partially Sighted people in Yorkshire and Lancashire

With summer approaching, you may be looking forward to a day out. This article will explore the travel concessions available to blind and partially sighted people living in North and West Yorkshire and Lancashire.

Bus Travel

Blind Persons Travel Pass (Bus)

Eligibility: Available to West Yorkshire residents who are (or are eligible to be) registered Blind or severely Sight-Impaired. Entitles you to travel free anytime in West Yorkshire and free off-peak travel anywhere in England.

Disabled Persons (Travel Pass in West Yorkshire) Bus Pass

Eligibility – West Yorkshire, North Yorkshire and Lancashire residents who are (or are eligible to be) registered blind or partially sighted.

West Yorkshire—Free off-peak travel within West Yorkshire.

North Yorkshire—Free travel within North Yorkshire and York any time of the day except between 6 am and 9 am. Some journeys are exempt from this restriction; you should check with NYCC before travelling.

Lancashire – Free off-peak travel within Lancashire – A flat fare of £1 per journey on local bus travel within Lancashire before 9.30 am.

Note: All local authority passes allow free off-peak travel on a bus anywhere in England. Off-peak is defined as 9.30 am to 11 pm on a weekday, all day Saturday, Sunday, and Public Holidays. Certain journeys or services are subject to different rules; you should check with your local authority before travelling.

Train Travel

Blind Persons Travel Pass (Train)

Eligibility: Available to West Yorkshire residents who are (or are eligible to be) registered Blind or severely Sight-Impaired.

The Blind Persons Travel Pass entitles you to free train travel at any time of the day within West Yorkshire.

Disabled Persons Travel Pass (Train)

Eligibility: Available to West Yorkshire residents who are (or are eligible to be) registered sight-impaired or Partially-Sighted.

Half-fare, off-peak train travel within West Yorkshire. Off-peak train travel is Monday to Friday after 0930 until 1600, then from 1830, and all day on weekends and public holidays. If you are travelling by train during the weekday evening peak – 1601 to 1829 – you will need to buy an Anytime Day Single or Anytime Day Return ticket.

Note: The Blind/Disabled Persons travel pass covers journeys within West Yorkshire. For cross-boundary travel, you must pay the fare for the non-West Yorkshire section at the start of your journey—usually the full Adult fare. You should check with WYMetro before travelling.

Disabled Persons Rail Card

Eligibility: National – Be registered Blind or Partially Sighted

Visually impaired people receive discounts on National Rail Travel in England, Wales, and Scotland, including 34% off first class/standard anytime singles or returns and 50% off first class/standard anytime day returns. A Disabled Railcard costs £20 for one year or £54 for three years. Options include a physical plastic card or a digital card on your phone.

Companion Pass

Companion passes allow a companion to travel with you for free or at a discounted rate.

West Yorkshire

Mode of Travel: Bus and Train


  • Have a Blind Persons Travel Pass or
  • Have a Disabled Persons Travel Pass and receive one of the following benefits for at least 12 months:
    • Higher Rate Care Disability Living Allowance
    • Higher Rate Attendance Allowance
    • PIP – Enhanced Daily Living
    • PIP – At least 10 points on the ‘Planning and following a journey’ activity

A companion is entitled to the same concessions as the Blind/Disabled Travel Pass holder, but only when they travel together. The companion does not receive their own card and cannot use the disabled person’s card to travel without them being present. The companion does not need to be the same person for each journey; however, they must get on and off the bus or train at the same time as the pass holder.

North Yorkshire

Mode of Travel: Bus


  • You are sight impaired (partially sighted), severely sight impaired (blind), or
  • You need additional support because of your disability; North Yorkshire accept receipt of the following benefits as evidence.
    • Higher Rate Mobility or Care Disability Living Allowance
    • Higher Rate Attendance Allowance
    • PIP – Enhanced Daily Living or Mobility component

Cross Boundry Travel

Certain local authorities have reciprocal agreements that allow cross-boundary bus travel but not travel within that local authority. North and West Yorkshire have reciprocal agreements with North Yorkshire and York, West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA), South Yorkshire, East Riding of Yorkshire and Hull, and North and North East Lincolnshire (North Yorkshire).

Your companion can travel for free on a return journey from Keighley to Skipton but not from Skipton to Grassington. If travelling to a non-participating authority, such as from Leeds to Manchester return, your companion is entitled to free travel for the Leeds to Manchester part of the journey but not the Manchester to Leeds part.


  • Lancashire does not offer a companion pass.


Mode of Travel: Train


The standard Disabled Persons Rail Card automatically entitles a companion to the same discounts as the holder. However, registered sight-impaired (partially sighted) or severely sight-impaired (blind) people can also buy one adult Season ticket that enables a companion to travel with you on National Rail services only at no extra cost (so two people travel for the price of one). It doesn’t have to be the same person travelling with you on every journey.

How to Apply

West Yorkshire – Blind Persons Travel Pass/Disabled Persons Travel Pass

Phone: Bradford Council Travel Concessions Department – 01274 438723



North Yorkshire – Disabled Persons Bus Pass

Phone: 0300 131 2131


Lancashire – Disabled Persons Bus Pass

Phone: Now Card – 0300 123 6737


National Disabled Persons Rail Card

Phone: 0345 6050 525



Stethoscope resting on a laptop next to a paper form.

NHS Accessible Information Standard

“This is an eye clinic; I’m Blind; tell me you’re not pointing!”.

Simon Mahoney, Winging It Blind


Have you ever missed a hospital appointment because you couldn’t read the letter, or maybe you’ve had to ask a friend or relative to read a letter from your consultant, even though you’d rather keep that information private? Or did you miss your appointment slot because you couldn’t see your name flash up on the screen in the waiting room?

What is the NHS Accessible Information Standard

In 2016, the NHS Accessible Information Standard was introduced to address these issues. Unfortunately, according to research by the RNIB 2021, “81 per cent of patients reported having an appointment where their communication needs were unmet”, and “77 per cent of people with accessible information needs reported rarely or never receiving information in alternative formats.” The NHS Information standard requires that NHS Hospitals, GPs, and Adult Social Care providers must do the following: –

  • Identify the communication needs of the people using their services
  • Consistently record those needs, specifying the need rather than the reason. I.e. Requires Large Print, lip reader, needs collecting from the waiting room.
  • Have a consistent flagging system that alerts anyone involved in your care about your communication needs.
  • Sharing (with your consent) your communication needs where appropriate. For example, a GP making a referral to a consultant must include your communication needs.
  • Make sure they meet those needs. The standard allows you to specify the following: –
  • How you would like to be contacted – Telephone, Email, Text etc.
  • What format you would like the information in – Large Print, Braille, Audio, electronic format, Easy Read, BSL Video.
  • What support do you need during your appointment – Sign Language Interpreter, Guide Communicator.
  • Any additional support you need to communicate, such as hearing aids or to be able to lip read.

How to make your communication needs known.

Tell the person providing your care what your communication needs are and ask that they record this information in compliance with the NHS Accessible Information Standard.

If your communication needs are not met.

  • Remind them that they have a legal duty to provide accessible information under the Accessible Information Standard
  • Make an informal complaint via PALs (Patient Advice and Liaison Service)
    • Airedale NHS Trust contact 01535 294019 or email
    • Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust contact 01274 364810, Monday – Friday, 9am – 4pm or email
    • Leeds Teaching Hospitals HHS Trust contact 0113 2066261 or email
    • Contact Healthwatch Bradford District on 01535 665258 or email or Healthwatch North Yorkshire on 01423 788128 or email
Blind Persons TV Licence Concession

Blind Persons TV Licence Concession

As of the 1 August 2020, the BBC scrapped free TV licences for the over 75s unless they receive pension credit. However, you may be able to apply for the Blind Persons TV Licence Concession.

What reductions are available?

You can get a Free TV licence if:-

  • You are over 75 and get pension credit
  • You are over 75, and regardless of if you get pension credit you live in a care home that has an ARC (Accommodation for Residential Care Licence), you need to speak to the care home administrator to see if this applies to you.

You can get a 50% reduction in the cost of a TV Licence if

  • You or someone you live with is Blind/Severely sight impaired regardless of their age.

You don’t need a TV licence if:-

  • You receive TV signals by a digital receiver that can only play sound and not display a picture.

Blind Persons TV Licence Concession

You are eligible for a 50% reduction in the cost of your TV Licence If you or someone you live with is registered Blind or Severely Sight Impaired. For a Colour TV, that’s £79.50, and for a Black and White TV, it is £26.75 (as of 18 December 2023).

How to apply

To apply for the Blind Persons TV Licence concession you can contact TV Licensing on 0300 790 6083 or visit their website at

When you first apply for the Blind person concession, you will need to provide proof that you are Blind or Severely Sight Impaired, this can be either a copy of:-

  • Your CVI (Certificate of Visual Impairment) or BD8 Certificate
  • A certificate or document issued by a Local Authority that shows you are registered as blind (severely sight impaired)
  • certificate from an Ophthalmologist (eye surgeon), stating that you are blind (severely sight impaired

Sight airedale is unable to provide you with proof of your visual impairment. Your GP (they may charge for this) or Hospital should be able to provide you with evidence of your visual status.

If the Blind Person is not the licence payer.

If the Blind person is not the licence payer, you will need to transfer the TV licence into their name, assuming they are over 18 for more information on how to do this visit the TV Licensing website or call them on 0300 790 6083. You will need to have your current TV licence number available.

How to get a refund

If you are currently paying for a full TV licence, you can apply for a refund from the date that you became registered Blind or April 2000, which is when the scheme started. You will need to be able to show that you were registered blind at the time you purchased the licence.

bequeathed Make your will for good

Get a free will from a leading legal firm

Good for family, good for friends and good for charities like ours.

Make your will for good.  Free and professionally drafted with our partners at Bequeathed - Start you Will

Sight airedale has partnered with Bequeathed to offer an accessible and inclusive service where every supporters can make a free Will For Good. Just follow these simple steps which will take less than an hour of your time:

1. Take our online will interview in as little as 20 minutes Our system creates your will from the answers you give, and we transfer it to one of our partner legal firms.

2. Have a 30-minute telephone or video appointment with a legal professional They will discuss your situation and your wishes and confirm the will caters for your needs.

3. Receive your free will in the post, sign it and have it witnessed You can then return a copy to the legal firm who will check it has been executed correctly.

Having an up to date will is the only way to make sure the people and causes you care about are looked after when you’re gone.

Once you’ve taken care of friends and family, Sight Airedale would be extremely grateful if you would consider supporting them with a gift in your will.

Start your free will

Line Drawing of Dad with children - dad is holding money and a house.
Sun Setting behind pylons

Help with Energy Costs

With the record rise in energy prices over the past year and the rise in October, we look at what help is available. This is what is available as of 17 October 2022.

Energy Price Guarantee

The government has capped the rate at which suppliers can charge for energy until April 2023. For gas this is 10.3p per kWh and for electricity 34p per kWh. The guarantee does not mean you’ll only pay a maximum of £2,500. This figure refers to what a typical household using 242 kWh of electricity and 1,000 kWh of gas a month would pay. If you use more than this, you will pay more.

£400 Energy Bill Discount.

Who gets it? Everyone

How do I get it? You don’t need to do anything your energy supplier will automatically apply it to your bills.

When will I get it? The £400 will be paid over 6 months, to ensure you get support over the winter period. In October and November you will get £66 and in December, January, February and March you will get £67. How you will receive the discount will depend on how you pay for your energy, Direct Debit customers will see a reduction in their monthly Direct Debit or as a refund to their bank account. If you pay your bill each month or use a payment card, the discount will be applied to your account just as if you’d made a payment. If you have a pre-payment meter, you will either get the discount credited directly to your meter or receive it as a voucher. Your energy supplier will let you know which applies to you.

I live off-grid, will I get any support? The government has committed itself to providing the equivalent of the £400 discount to households who don’t have a domestic electricity meter or a direct relationship with an electricity supplier, details of this scheme will be announced in the Autumn.

£300 (per household) Pensioner Cost of Living Payment

Who gets it? People aged 66 or over between 19 and 25 September 2022. There are some exceptions, and you should check

How do I get it? You don’t need to do anything. You will receive £300 on top of your winter fuel payment.

When will I get it? November or December, it will be paid by Direct Debit into the account you normally get your winter fuel payment into.

£650 — Cost of Living Payment

Who gets it? Anyone in receipt of the following means-tested benefits, Universal Credit, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), income-related, Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), Income Support, Pension Credit, Child Tax Credit, and Working Tax Credit. However, eligibility depends on when you were awarded your benefit, so you should check at to ensure you are eligible

How do I get it? You don’t need to do anything, it will be paid automatically into the account that your qualifying benefit is paid into. However, if you think you should have received payment and haven’t, you can report it by visiting

When will I get it? It depends on what benefit you are on. Most people should have received their first payment of £326 between 14 and 31 July 2022. If you receive tax credit, you will receive your first payment of £326 between the 2 and 7 of September. A further payment of £324 will be made in the Autumn (or Winter 2022 for tax credit recipients) The actual dates have not been announced yet.

£150 — Disability Cost of Living Payment

Who gets it? Anyone in receipt of a non-means tested disability payment such as Personal Independence Payment, Disability Living Allowance, Attendance Allowance or Armed Forces Independence Payment and War Pension Mobility Supplement. Eligibility depends on when you were awarded your benefit

How do I get it? You don’t need to do anything, it will be automatically paid into the account that you receive your benefit payments. If you are in receipt of a disability benefit from both the DWP and MOD, you will only get a payment from the DWP.

When will I get it? You should receive the payment from the 20 September, most people should receive their payment by the beginning of October.

Other help you can get

If you are struggling to pay your energy bills it is important that you talk to your energy provider. They will be able to help you come up with a payment plan and may also have schemes that can help you.

Priority Services Register

The priority services register allows utility companies to identify customers who are vulnerable either through age, illness or disability. By signing up to the priority services register, you can get additional support in the event of service disruptions, such as advance notification of power cuts and extra support whilst the supply is disrupted. Other help includes a password scheme to help you identify callers, the ability to nominate someone else you trust to receive communications from your supplier, help with moving a prepayment meter if you can’t get to it to top up, and regular meter readings if you’re unable to read your meter. For more information on the priority services register, contact your supplier — you only need to register once, and you don’t need to register for each utility

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Future Vision Visionary Winner 2021

Future Vision wins National Award

We are pleased to announce that we are joint winners of a national award for Future Vision, a project to bring Virtual Technology Events to people living with sight loss

Future Vision is a collaboration between seven local independent sight loss charities (Sight Advice South Lakes – Cumbria, My Sight Notts – Nottingham, Support 4 Sight – West & South Essex, Sight Concern Worcestershire – Worcestershire, Sutton Vision – London Borough of Sutton, Kirklees Visual Impairment Network – Huddersfield West Yorkshire). Each charity takes turns hosting a monthly event on a technology-related topic. The one-hour sessions delivered online via the video conferencing platform Zoom comprise a guest speaker followed by a question-and-answer session.

The Rainbow Award, awarded by Visionary, a national organisation representing local sight loss charities, “highlights the organisations and individuals who have been a Rainbow in the pandemic, through being open and generous; sharing knowledge, challenges, their staff and practical information and examples of what has worked for them.”

Visionary described the future vision project as “The Living Well and Future Vision sessions are an excellent example of collaborative working and enhancing the benefits for blind and partially sighted people in your local communities.” The RNIB who sponsored the award said, “These regular informative sessions called “Living Well” and “Future Vision” have provided a much-needed engagement, stimulation and support during very challenging times. It is a fantastic example of how organisations, by working together, have been able to share resources to create and build something great.”

Antony Horner, ICT Manager at sight airedale, said, “It’s fantastic that we’ve won this award and that other organisations see the value in what we’ve achieved. The beauty of Future Vision is the regularity of the sessions and the variety of topics we’ve been able to cover. This has only been possible through our collaboration with our partner organisations.

Future Vision Technology events take place on the fourth Thursday of each month starting at 10am. For the Zoom link please contact

Turn on AmazonSmile in the Amazon App

Turn on Amazon Smile in the Amazon app.

You can now support sight airedale through amazon smile by using the amazon app on your iPhone or android phone. 

  1. Load the Amazon shopping app
  2. Choose the main menu
  3. Choose settings
  4. Choose Amazon smile
  5. Follow the on-screen prompts

If you’re not already giving to us via visit When you shop at 0.5% of your purchase will go to support sight airedale. If you forget, Amazon will remind you.

Covid-19 Scams

Don’t fall for Covid-19 Scams

Trading standards have launched the Friends Against Scams scheme to raise awareness of Covid-19 scams. You can learn more by visiting Beware Of COVID-19 Scams.

Be aware of people offering or selling

  • Virus Testing Kits – These are only offered by the NHS
  • Vaccines or miracle cures – there is currently no vaccine or cure
  • Overpriced or fake goods to protect yourself from coronavirus such as anti-bacterial products
  • Shopping or medication collection services
  • Home cleaning services.
Our Covid-19 Update

Covid-19 Update

We hope you are all staying safe during this time, we’re both working from home, so the office is closed to callers, but we are still answering the phones. Our helpline hours remain the same from 9.30 am to 12.30 pm Monday to Thursday.

Continue reading “Covid-19 Update”