South Cumbria train fares hike splits opinion
Last updated at 16:55, Friday, 04 January 2013
COMMUTERS and travellers in Furness have expressed mixed feelings over the latest hike in train fares that came into effect on New Year’s Day.
Some have warned that if prices continue to increase beyond the average 4.2 per cent increase announced this week, then the cost could start to deter train use – however most commuters at Barrow station on Wednesday admitted they would simply put up with the price hikes.
Two Millom residents travelling by train to visit Furness General Hospital felt that travellers would just have to deal with the price increase.
Christine Carney, a volunteer at Age UK, and Pauline Altree take the train from Millom to Barrow once every three weeks to use shopping facilities and visit the hospital.
Mrs Carney said: “It is still cheaper to get a train than paying fuel and parking.”
Grandmother Nalini Keay, who lives in Barrow, said that she would continue to pay the increased prices so she could visit her daughter in Kent.
The 75-year-old retired nurse, who was travelling back from London, said: “I don’t think price will put me off going.”
The government have today been urged to rule out plans that could see even higher fares.
Ministers should also set out a long-term policy on annual season ticket fare rises, the report by the House of Commons Transport Committee says.
Reducing the cost of the railways to taxpayers must not be achieved by “ramping up fares” said the committee’s chairman Louise Ellman.
The committee’s report on the railways comes just days after inflation-busting average rises of 4.2 per cent for regulated fares, which include season tickets, took effect for passengers.
Campaign for Better Transport are also calling for an end to above-inflation rail fare rises and a reduction in current prices.
And the TUC say average train fares have risen nearly three times faster than average wages since the beginning of the recession in 2008.
CBT chief executive Stephen Joseph said: “The impact of successive governments’ policies on rail fares is appalling.
“ The time has come not just to stop the rises but to reduce fares.”
First published at 16:46, Friday, 04 January 2013
Published by http://www.nwemail.co.uk
Have your say
A return to Lancaster costs Â£13 (or just over) fuel to drive it myself costs Â£10. Millom is Â£6 on the train (or near enough), or Â£5 to drive.Manchester? Â£32 on the train, Â£23 to drive.Now you also have to factor in running costs of the car - but if you already own and insure a car, the extra mileage doesn't add much to your servicing & MOT costs.For commuting to work daily, the total yearly cost for the train is about the same as by car (while being less convenient), for occasional pre-planned trips, advance fares are cheap while confusing (get the wrong train and you end up paying for two tickets)... but for anyone who wants to use a train irregularly and without notice, you're normally better off with a car. Oh, and all of this is assuming that there is only one adult travelling. As soon as you start taking more than one person in the car, the train makes no sense whatsoever.
The train is still around a third of the cost of a taxi to Manchester airport (even cheaper if you book ahead), so if you are travelling alone or just two of you, it's worthwhile. And I can book in advance and get a train to Aberdeen for around Â£40 - a heck of a lot cheaper than I can drive there for.