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Rail fare rises - east report

Rail fare rises are the "price we have to pay for investment in our trains". That's what the Sussex MP and Transport Minister Norman Baker told us today. There have been continuous rises ahead of inflation for ten years now.

Commuters and rail unions say the previous Government's policy of pushing up fares must stop before rail becomes ruinously expensive. Our Transport Correspondent Mike Pearse reports.

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Train companies respond to calls to reduce fares

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. Ministers want passengers to pay a larger share of railway running costs to reduce the contribution from taxpayers while sustaining investment in better stations, new trains and faster services.

– Michael Roberts, Chief Executive of the Association of Train Operating Companies

From today, the average increase in season tickets and all other fares is 3.9%. Train companies are working with the rest of the rail industry to cut the costs per passenger and so give ministers the opportunity in future to move away from their policy of above-inflation annual fare rises.

– Michael Roberts, Chief Executive of the Association of Train Operating Companies

Train ticket prices rise today

Commuters pay more for tickets Credit: ITV Meridian

Commuters across the South and South East will have to pay higher train fares from today.

Research done by the Campaign for Better Transport shows many season tickets prices have risen by more than 50% in the last 10 years.

The average fare increase is nearly 4% up on this time last year.

Meanwhile commuters using the Chiltern railway will be charged more to park their cars at train stations in Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire from today.

Wendover, Princes Risborough, Haddenham and Thame, Bicester North and Banbury are among those affected.

Car parking charges at train stations go up Credit: ITV Meridian

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