Letters have started going out to more than 60,000 Cumbrians who will need to renew their NoWcards for concessionary bus travel between now and the end of March 2013.
A total of 62,000 Cumbrians (over 60s and eligible people with disabilities) were issued NoWcards when the scheme was introduced in 2008. As all cards have a five-year expiry, the reissuing of NowCards is a significant administrative project which is being co-ordinated across the North West region by Lancashire County Council on behalf of other councils, including Cumbria.
All holders of cards which expire on 31 March 2013 are being sent forms containing their details and, if correct and no new photo or proof of disability is required, they can then easily renew their cards either online at www.nowcard.org or by calling an automated phoneline on 01772 539090, quoting their customer reference number at the top of the form. Anyone needing to change their personal details, photo, or provide up to date proof of disability can do this by post.
As all of the details are being sent to addresses from the database compiled in 2008, anyone who has changed their address since then and holds a NoWcard which is due to expire on 31 March 2013 needs to update their details now via the NoWcard helpline on 0845 058 1096 or via the website www.nowcard.org so that they can be sent the correct form.
NoWcards dated 31 March 2013 will no longer be valid after this date but people can still apply for a renewal using the forms sent to them until 30 June 2013. After then applicants will need to complete a new application providing new evidence.
All new applicants for new NoWcards will continue to be processed via Cumbria's libraries - the 01772 539090 number is only for the renewal of cards expiring on 31 March 2013.
Card holders are being provided with the following Frequently Asked Questions:
How do I renew my pass online?
If your details on the form are correct and we don't need a new photograph visit www.nowcard.org and follow the links to renew your pass. You will need your customer number printed on the form to renew your pass. You will not need to send your form back.
How do I renew my pass by telephone?
If your details on the form are correct, and we don't need a new photograph call the automated telephone line 01772 539090. If the line is busy please try again later, the line is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You will need your customer number printed on the form. Enter numbers using your telephone keypad, you may be asked to enter # (hash key) and Ú (star key) during this call. You will not need to send your form back.
My details on the form are wrong, what should I do?
Please mark the corrections in the spaces provided and return in an envelope to the address printed on the back of the form. Please do not forget to put a stamp on your envelope.
My form asks for a new photograph, what should I do?
You need to get a passport style photograph which should be of head and shoulders only with a light background and no dark glasses show your full head, without any head covering, unless you wear one for religious beliefs or medical reasons.
When will I get my new bus pass?
Your bus pass will be posted as soon as possible after you have made your renewal by phone, post or online. The sooner you renew your pass the sooner you will receive your new pass. Please allow at least 28 working days after you have ordered your pass before checking on its progress.