Back to work tomorrow? If you’re a commuter there’s bad news, as rail fares are going up yet again.
Under the Tories rail fares have rocketed by 27% – that’s a rise three times faster than the growth in our wages. Some season tickets are up by over 40%. All this at a time when a lot of us are wondering how we can make ends meet.
Under-investment is leading to chaos and cost to commuters, and we are not just talking about financial costs, many commuters in Portsmouth are spending less time with their families because of the failure of our railways.
We were told that higher fares would fund investment, but vital projects to improve reliability have been delayed for years. Passengers are paying even more to travel on increasingly overcrowded and unreliable trains.
Cllr Stephen Morgan, Portsmouth Labour Leader said:
“As a regular train user myself I know the pain and misery caused to the lives of ordinary people by under-investment in our rail.
Labour proposals are sensible and have wide public support. It’s time to put people before profit and put passengers first by bringing rail back into public ownership”.
The Tories can’t admit it, but rail privatisation has been a failure. Every year, millions of pounds which could go on improvements is handed to shareholders. Rigid contracts make it harder to deal with overcrowding.
Labour would return routes to public ownership as private contracts expire, meaning profits can be re-invested to improve services and hold fares down.
Cllr Morgan added:
“Labour isn’t talking about turning the clocks back, we want a new deal for the railways which delivers a world class rail service”.