Michael Roberts, director general of the Rail Delivery Group, has welcomed the Government's move to limit fare increases.
It follows new rail fares coming into force today that see the price of annual season tickets rise by 3.1 per cent.
"We strongly support the Government’s decision to limit the average increase in Season ticket prices this year.
"This, combined with the determination of train companies to continue attracting passengers, means the average increase across all fares is 2.8%, the lowest in four years.
"To help the Government hold down fares in future, the rail industry is working hard to get more for every pound it spends.
“This year and in coming years, passengers across the country will continue to benefit from billions of pounds spent on improving services.
"As well as introducing more carriages, work will proceed on major projects like the new Birmingham New Street station and thousands of smaller, less visible schemes to improve the railway.”
Passengers will pay higher rail fares from today, with annual tickets rising by an average of 3.1 per cent.
The increase will mean some commuters will be forced to pay more than £5,000 a year.
A number of these fares, including some on the East Coast route, are going up by much less than 3.1 per cent, with the overall rise in tickets - regulated and unregulated - being 2.8 per cent.
The rise is for regulated fares which include season tickets.
The increase could have been even greater, but Chancellor George Osborne announced in his Autumn Statement in early December that the regulated fare price cap of RPI inflation plus 1 per cent was being changed to RPI plus 0 per cent.
Train companies retain an average of just 3p from every pound paid for rail tickets, with the vast majority of revenue going on maintenance, staff costs and investment in the rail network, according to figures released by the industry association the Rail Delivery Group:
The Government insisted that it understands passengers concerns over the cost of rail fares as annual season tickets rose by 3.1 per cent.
Campaign groups have complained about the increase, with the Campaign for Better Transport saying that fares are rising three times faster than wages.
A Department for Transport spokesman said: "The Government understands concerns rail passengers have about the costs of fares and the impact they have on household budgets.
"That is why next year, for the first time in a decade, regulated fares will not rise on average by more than the rate of inflation, offering relief for families and the hard-working people.
"As a result of the economic policies that this government has put in place, the most recent forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility are that by around 2015, fares will be rising in line with wages and salaries."
The spokesman insisted that the fares passengers pay will drive the "biggest programme of rail modernisation ever" resulting in new state-of-the-art trains, better stations and shorter journey times.
Virgin Trains have announced that they are cutting the prices of their Carlisle to Glasgow route over the Christmas period.
An off-peak return fair will now cost £16, a 30% discount off the price of a standard off-peak day return to the Scottish city.
First class off-peak tickets will now be £36.
The 'shopper' tickets are available at train stations after 9am from 9 December to 12 January.
Northern Rail trains running between Carlisle and Newcastle are being delayed by around one hour due to a broken down train between Hexham and Carlisle.
Channel Tunnel high-speed train operators Eurostar is bidding to operate the East Coast Main Line.
The rail route, which runs from London to Scotland, has been operated in the public sector since 2009.
Eurostar is launching a joint bid with French company Keolis to run the line.
Eurostar chief executive Nicolas Petrovic said:
"By joining forces with Keolis, we bring a unique blend of expertise and innovation with a fresh perspective.
"The East Coast franchise is a vital economic artery and a key route for both business and leisure passengers which represents an exciting opportunity for future growth and investment."
There are delays of up to one hour and thirty minutes on Virgin Trains between Glasgow Central and London Euston, and between Edinburgh Waverley and Birmingham New Street, due to a broken down freight train between Oxenholm Lake District and Lancaster.
This also affects First Transpennine Express trains.
A very special birthday was celebrated at the Ravenglass to Eskdale railway in west Cumbria today.
One of the lines oldest servants has reached their centenary.
Samantha Parker went to find out more and you can watch her full report below.
Scotland's Transport Minister will outline his concerns at HolyroodRead the full story ›