Rail fares up by 6.2%

Hard-hit rail commuters face a greater-than-expected 6.2% hike in average fares in the new year after official figures revealed a shock rise in the inflation rate today.

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Rail fare rises in the east of the Meridian region

For many people in Kent, Sussex and Essex, the train is the only way of getting about - especially if they work in London.

So today's news about big fare rises in January 2013 means they will either have to pay up - or find a new job.

At the moment a Brighton to London season ticket costs £3392 - that will increase by more than two hundred pounds.

Ashford to London on the high speed line goes up from £5504 to 5845. While Sevenoaks to London from 2980 to 3164. Dover to London - using the high speed line - increases from £5556 to not much short of six thousand pounds.

Rail fare rises in the West of the Meridian region

Today's announcement sees a 6.2% average increase in rail fares from the start of next year.

Rail commuters in the western part of the Meridian region already pay anything between £3,400 to get to London from Brighton. And up to £7,500 a year to travel to the capital from Wiltshire.

From 2013, train passengers from Bournemouth will pay more than £6,100 a year for an annual ticket. If you live in Swindon, you'll have to fork out almost eight thousand pounds a year.

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Southampton MP expresses alarm at fare hikes

John Denham says increases are far too high Credit: Google images

John Denham, Labour MP for Southampton Itchen, has expressed alarm at today's news regarding rail fare increases.

Mr Denham said:

"Living costs are rising and hard-working families are finding it hard to make ends meet. For many the daily commute is now their biggest household bill.

"It’s time for the Tory-led Government to do something to help Southampton’s many commuters.

“Those already spending over £4,000 on a season ticket from Southampton Central to London are likely to be hit hard by these increases if they go ahead.

"Quite simply, the Tory-led Government should not be increasing fares using its current formula, which puts fares at 3% above inflation. It is far too high. Train companies should not be allowed to increase ticket prices by any more than one per cent above inflation across all routes.”

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