NEVER MIND the snazzy, expensive railway line that the government grudgingly approved on February 11th. What really stirs politicians’ hearts is the humble bus. Both the chancellor of the exchequer, Sajid Javid, and the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, are the sons of bus drivers, as they are not shy of saying. Boris Johnson, the prime minister, claims to love buses so much that he models them out of wine crates. This week he promised to throw more money at them.

This will go down well. Buses account for more public-transport trips than trains, tubes and trams put together. People love them, in theory: one poll by Transport Focus, a consumer group, found that 74% of young people think they are a good way

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