Anger as rail fares set to rise again

5:00pm Tuesday 19th August 2014

RAIL users have reacted angrily to the announcement that fares are set to rise another 3.5 percent next year.

Commuters said prices were not representative of the service they are being provided with.

The number has been determined by adding one percent to the retail prices index which stood at 2.5 percent for July.

Peter Radford, leader of the Chelmsford Commuters and Rail Travellers group, said no benefit has come as a result of the fare increases.

He said: “We suffer a shoddy service for a variety of reasons, and despite the increase we’re getting no investment in the system.

“There’s no justification from the point of view of it going up as much as 3.5 percent. If they could justify the increase with improvements to services, people might be less upset.”

The hike means train prices have up by nearly a quarter since the coalition came to power in 2010, while wages have risen by only 6.9 percent.

This year the government capped rail prices so that they were in line with inflation. It’s not known yet whether they will do same this time around.

Chelmsford’s Tory MP Simon Burns said he will call on Chancellor George Osborne to make sure the cap is brought in once again.

He said: “I will be pressing him to take this course of action to help commuters in Chelmsford who are reliant on the railways to get to work.’

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