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Calls to stop next week's strike

A Southern train on a platform Credit: Philip Toscano/PA Wire

The Transport Secretary is calling for driver's union Aslef to stop next week's strike after the Office of Rail and Road confirmed Southern Railway's plans for driver-controlled trains are safe.

Unions have been taking strike action over plans to introduce trains where the driver controls the operation of the doors, which the unions claim is unsafe.


Fire near Waterloo station causes delays

Train lines were blocked coming in and out of Waterloo. Credit: Andrew Parsons / PA Archive/Press Association Images

Train services have reopened at Waterloo station after all lines were blocked following a fire.

However passengers are being warned that they still face cancellations and delays until at least 9pm.

A blaze under railway arches near the station led to all South West trains coming to and from the transport hub being halted.

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Some services have been cancelled and others face delays of around 45 minutes.

Tickets are being accepted on Thameslink and Underground services.

Passengers are being advised to check for updates.

Fare increase is the 'lowest in five years' according to Rail Delivery Group

Credit: PA

Michael Roberts, director general of the Rail Delivery Group representing rail operators and Network Rail, has said:

At 2.2%, the average increase in fares in 2015 is the lowest for five years. We understand no one likes to pay more, especially to go to work.

For every £1 spent on fares, 97p goes on track, train, staff and other costs while 3p goes in profits earned by train companies for running services on Europe's fastest growing railway.

We are very sorry that many passengers experienced a service well short of what they deserved last weekend. To ensure we build a better railway, Network Rail is spending £38 billion over five years alongside commitments made by train companies.

This will deliver more seats, better stations and improved journeys for passengers.

– Michael Roberts

Unions argue this year's price rises will hit passengers 'particularly hard'

TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said:

This year's fare hike will hit passengers particularly hard because wages are rising so slowly.

Rail fares are now consuming a huge proportion of people's wages, leaving precious little for other bread and butter expenses.

On average passengers are now paying £600 more for a season ticket and yet seeing no change in their pay packets.

– Frances O'Grady

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said:

The scandal of Britain's great rail fares rip off continues with today's hike far outstripping average pay increases, and it will once again hit those at the sharp end of the austerity clampdown the hardest.

– Mick Cash


Rail fares rise by an average of 2.2%

Rail passengers will be hit as the price of train tickets rise by an average of 2.2%.

Regulated fares, which include season tickets, are going up by 2.5% while the average increase for all fares is 2.2%.

The rail industry said the increase is the lowest since 2010 but campaigners and trade unions argue the increases are continuing to outstrip the average rise in wages.

The Campaign for Better Transport said the cost of a Milton Keynes to London season ticket had risen by 23.5% - or £930 - since January 2010. The price of a 2015 ticket is £4,888.

Passengers had to queue at Finsbury Park station last Saturday after engineering works overran. Credit: PA

The rises comes after weeks of disruption to rush-hour services. Over-running engineering work led to chaos last Saturday, with King's Cross, Finsbury Park and Paddington stations having to be closed and resulted in Network Rail chief executive Mark Carne announcing he would not be taking his annual performance-related bonus.

Trains at Cannon Street cancelled until at least 2pm

There are severe delays for commuters in the capital today with train services into Cannon Street station cancelled because of a "safety issue".

Southeastern services running through the station are affected and many trains are diverted to Victoria and Blackfriars.

Trains will not be running into the station until at least 2pm. The problem is thought to be due to an issue with the track on one of the bridges running into the station.

Train passengers to face weekend line closures

Train passengers will tomorrow face the first of three August weekend part-closures of a key rail route from London to Scotland.

Work on an £81 million improvement plan at Watford in Hertfordshire means that the West Coast line will be closed between Euston station in London and Hemel Hempstead in Hertfordshire tomorrow and Sunday.

Services run by Virgin Trains, London Midland, London Overground and Southern, will face disruption. Credit: PA

Services run by Virgin Trains, London Midland, London Overground and Southern, will face disruption.

The same closure will be in place from Saturday August 16 to Monday August 18 and also from Saturday August 23 to bank holiday Monday August 25.

Football fans are warned to expect disruption as the first of the closures co-incides with the start of the Football League season.

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