THE popular MiCard scheme is to be saved, but a charge will be introduced for its useage, Barnsley Council has confirmed. The scheme came under fire in the latest round of budget cuts as the council revealed it had to axe some of the £2 million it costs to run the MiCard, a scheme which offered free bus travel to young people at certain times of the day.

There were three options put to Barnsley's Youth Council to safeguard the future of the scheme - and out of 24 voters, 22 thought the option to introduce a fee was the best way forward.

Now, anyone using a MiCard will have to pay a fare of 30p per journey (even at weekends.)

A spokesman said: "This option removes the free travel element of the MiCard scheme entirely but it offers cheap fares all day, every day. Many other areas have a 60p minimum fare for young people." The change will come into effect at the end of August, ready for the start of the new academic year.

Latest figures show that around 67 per cent of children and young people in Barnsley use the cards.