Fylde passenger groups blast rail fares hike

Stephen Brookes
Stephen Brookes

Passenger groups have reacted with anger at an announcement that rail fares are to go up by 3.1 per cent in January.

The Rail Delivery Group announced the hike saying it was needed to bring in the improvements to the railway that passengers wanted.

Northern Rail train

Northern Rail train

But the rise, above CPI inflation of 2.4 per cent, was roundly slammed by consumer and travel groups after a year of chaos on the rails due to the over-running of upgrading work and the botched introduction of the May timetable which led to hundreds of late trains and cancellations.

Stephen Brooks, Lancashire-based rail sector champion for disabled travellers said: “We are being asked to pay more for less. The industry is short-changing passengers who are just not getting the service they pay for as we saw with the May timetable farce.

“It is about time the industry recognised that people are entitled to expect the services they pay for.”

Paul Nettleton from the Blackpool and Fylde Rail Users Association said: “It is disgusting really.

“The come out with the same excuses for the rises every year which have now worn thin especially after the past 12 months when people have on many occasions had no service.”

He added that while the Blackpool North Line had been electrified to bring it into the 21st Century, the Blackpool South line desperately needed some investment to improve services there.