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Osborne denies ticket dispute

The Chancellor George Osborne paid a £189.50 upgrade after boarding a first class train carriage with a standard class ticket this afternoon. The Treasury said Mr Osborne was not aware of any row with a ticket officer.

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Virgin Trains: Osborne was travelling on standard class ticket but had no direct contact with ticket collector

Chancellor George Osborne did travel in first class on a standard class ticket today, Virgin Trains told ITV News.

But, said Jim Rowe, a Virgin Trains spokesman, Mr Osborne had no direct communication with Virgin Trains staff.

An officer from the Metropolitan Police, escorting the Chancellor, alerted the train manager in advance that Mr Osborne did not have the correct ticket, Mr Rowe said.

Once on the train, the train manager informed the police officer that the Chancellor would have to pay an upgrade fare, a request which Mr Osborne's aide initially refused.

But after asking for a second time, the Chancellor's aide agreed that the extra £160 would indeed be paid.

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