Transport Minister defends rail fare increases

Family budgets are being squeezed, so that is why this coalition Government has taken proactive steps to cut the planned fare rises from 3% to 1% above inflation until 2014.

This decision puts an average of £45 per year back into the pockets of over a quarter of a million annual season ticket-holders. Many more holders of weekly and monthly season tickets could also see lower fares and some commuters could be over £100 better off.

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.

– Norman Baker, Transport Minister

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'No improvement' on trains

This week's rail fare rise comes at a time of "no perceptible improvement in services" campaign group Railfuture has claimed.