Rail fare rise demos take place

Protests against rail fare rises will be held across the country today amid warnings that the cost of train travel is set to be 40% higher from the new year than six years ago.

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Passengers hit out at another round of rail fare rises

The announcement that train fares will rise yet again next year has brought little cheer from passengers travelling on the country's rail network.

The Government has defended the 4.1% average rise in season ticket costs in England as necessary to maintaining an efficient system, while defending the continuing use of funds to pay for rail boss bonuses.

But commuters were left largely unimpressed, with one rail user at Euston Station branding the latest increase in prices "disgusting", as ITV News Consumer Editor Chris Choi reports:

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Transport Secretary defends rail boss bonuses

Patrick McLoughlin said bonuses were a "reward" for cutting out rail delays and overseeing an effective and efficient service. Credit: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin has defended a new round of bonuses to rail bosses while commuters are forced to pay a higher average cost of rail travel for an 11th year in a row.

Mr McLoughlin told BBC Radio 4's Today programme he had not "interfered with" Network Rail's rail contracts because it was a "private operating company ... set up by the last government".

He played down the issue of bonuses, saying: "The simple fact is that what people want is for our railway system to work effectively and efficiently. And they want those delays cutting out so I think the value is important that we get those kinds of service improvements and we keep down the cost."

Asked why rail bosses could not achieve this without extra financial incentives, he said: "Bonuses are one way which are a reward for delivering those services ... There is a bit more than just doing their job we are talking about some very very complicated engineering works that are going on."

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Ed Miliband: PM has 'sided with train companies'

Labour leader Ed Miliband has accused the Prime Minister of siding with train companies by allowing them to raise train fares above the rate of inflation.

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82% of passengers rate services 'satisfactory or good'

Michael Roberts, chief executive of the Association of Train Operating Companies, says that more than 80 percent of passengers surveyed are satisfied with rail services.

He said that the railways had expanded rapidly over the past 15 years and that trains are both newer and more frequent.

ITV News asked Mr Roberts how the latest hike in rail fares can be justified:

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King's Cross protesters call for return to National Rail

About 25 protesters calling for a cut in rail fares and a return to British Rail are staging a demonstration outside King's Cross Station in central London.

Action for Rail protesters outside Kings Cross Station in central London Credit: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire
Protester Bernard Harrison, 80, from Ealing Credit: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire
Protesters opposing a further rise in rail fares Credit: ITV News
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