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  1. ITV Report

Rail workers' union protest as higher rail fares announced

The cost of some season tickets will increase by more than £100. Credit: PA

The UK's biggest rail workers' union are protesting on the day higher rail fares are announced.

Members of the RMT will demonstrate outside stations in more than 30 locations.

They'll also step up demands for a publicly-owned railway.

Today it was announced rail commuters face an increase in season ticket costs next year of almost 3%.

The cap on the annual rise in regulated fares is linked to July’s rate of Retail Prices Index (RPI) inflation, which was announced by the Office for National Statistics as 2.8%.

Rail campaign groups warned that commuters will “refuse to pay” if season ticket prices continue to be hiked.

They have also called for the lower Consumer Prices Index (CPI) measure of inflation to be used to set fare increases, which are implemented from January 2 2020.

Protests will be taking place outside the following midlands stations...

  • Birmingham New Street – 0730-0930
  • Birmingham Snow Hill – 1600-1800
  • Burton on Trent – 1600-1730 – (Thursday 15th August)
  • Crewe – 0700 – 0900
  • Derby – 1600-1800
  • Wolverhampton

A 2.8% rise in season ticket prices would lead to an increase of more than £100 in the annual cost of getting to work for many commuters.

That would mean a ticket from Gloucester to Birmingham would increase by £119 to £4,357.

A poll by the RMT says 70% of rail passengers have been negatively impacted by rising rail fares

RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: “It is a national disgrace that the majority of UK rail passengers say that rising rail fares have forced them to make cut backs elsewhere.

Our railways should be run as an affordable and accessible public service and not for private profit.

– Mick Cash, RMT General Secretary

“These poll results send a clear message to the new Transport Secretary that rail passengers have had enough of being ripped off by the private rail companies’ profiteering. They deserve better.”