1. ITV Report

Rail fares rise

Rail fares rise by an average of 4.2% Photo: ITV Anglia

The mid-winter will be bleaker for millions of rail travellers today as rail fares rise by an average of 4.2%. The Green Party say it is the tenth year in a row fares have gone up by more than inflation. They have been protesting at Norwich station calling for a better public transport system.

Regulated fares, which include season tickets, are increasing by an average of 4.2%, with the overall average rise for all tickets being 3.9%.

Campaign groups have pointed out today's increase is the 10th successive above-inflation rise, with some rail season ticket holders seeing their fares rise by more than 50% in the last 10 years.

The TUC has said that fares have risen far faster than wages since the recession in 2008.

The Association of Train Operating Companies (Atoc) said railway funding can only come from taxpayers or from passengers "and the Government's policy remains that a bigger share must come from people who use the train."

Transport Minister Norman Baker said the Government had reduced fare increases planned for January 2013.

He added:

"We are engaged in the biggest rail investment programme since the 19th century and it is only right that the passenger, as well as the taxpayer, contributes towards that.

In the longer term, we are determined to reduce the cost of running the railways so that we can end the era of above-inflation fare rises."

Labour highlighted the fact that some season tickets are allowed to rise by more than the 4.2% average.

"David Cameron misled commuters when he promised to cap fare rises at 1% above inflation.

Many commuters have faced a nasty new year shock as they discover fares have gone up by as much as 9.2%.

The Government should come clean with commuters that this is a direct result of their decision to cave in to pressure from the private train companies to let them hike ticket prices beyond the so-called cap.

Campaign group Railfuture said that some fares could be going up by around 11% or 12%, "with no perceptible improvement in service."

– Shadow transport secretary Maria Eagle

Campaign group Railfuture said that some fares could be going up by around 11% or 12%, "with no perceptible improvement in service."

"The impact of successive Government's policies on rail fares is appalling.

It's truly shocking that we have deliberately made getting the train to work an extravagance that many struggle to afford. The time has come not just to stop the rises but to reduce fares."

– Campaign for Better Transport chief executive Stephen Joseph

"I understand the frustration felt by many commuters going back to work today.

At a time when real wages are falling and household budgets are being squeezed, rail travellers are being forced to endure yet another year of inflation-busting fare increases."

– TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady

"We understand commuters don't like to pay more to travel to work but it is the Government, not train companies, that decides how much season tickets should rise on average each year.

"Successive governments have required train companies to increase the average price of season tickets every January since 2004 by more than inflation."

– Michael Roberts, chief executive of the Association of Train Operating Companies

How much will your rail fare go up?

This is a table of rail fare rises, comparing the price of a 12-month season ticket bought in December with one bought today.

Route: Bishop's Stortford to London, 2012: **£3,704, 2013:** £3,852, % Rise: 4.0%

Route: Colchester to London, *2012: *£4,556, *2013: *£4,743, *% Rise: *4.1%

Route: Peterborough to London, 2012: £6,888, 2013: *£7,177, *% Rise: 4.2%

Route: Norwich to London, 2012: £7,184, 2013: £7,479,** % Rise:** 4.1%

For more information on rail tickets visit National Rail.