Mayor of London Boris Johnson fears criticism from his local paper - the Islington Tribune - if he withdraws funding for the Freedom Pass, which gives pensioners free public transport in the capital, it was claimed this week.
The Tribune has reported fears that withdrawal of funds by the Mayor, who lives in Islington, could be the first step towards the abolition or drastic scaling back of the free travel concession.
But Islington’s Labour council leader Councillor Catherine West, who lobbied the Mayor to reverse the move, has revealed: “Boris said: ‘Well, I certainly don’t want to pick up my local paper and see that there’s a big row about the Freedom Pass’.
“Later in the meeting he reiterated the fact that we needed a deal because ‘God forbid, the Islington Tribune would have it on their front page again’.”
The Tribune has ran the Mayor's reported comments from the meeting on its front page this week, under the headline: 'Freedom Pass: Boris fears wrath of Tribune'.