Crawley commuters hit by ‘eye-watering’ rail fare increase

Cllr Peter Lamb, leader of Crawley Borough Council SUS-140108-120547001 SUS-140108-120547001
Cllr Peter Lamb, leader of Crawley Borough Council SUS-140108-120547001 SUS-140108-120547001

The leader of Crawley Borough Council said commuters have suffered another ‘eye-watering’ rail fare hike.

Peter Lamb (Lab, Northgate) said a season train ticket from Three Bridges to London has now risen by £704 since 2010.

An annual increase in rail fares came into effect on Monday (January 4).

Cllr Lamb said: “Passengers in Crawley have been hit again and again by eye-watering rail fare rises.

“Fares have now rocketed by 25 per cent under the Tories, far outstripping any increase in most people’s pay packets.

“For many people here, travelling by train isn’t a luxury, it’s how they get to work every day.”

Crawley MP Henry Smith (Con) said: “Fares have been capped fares at inflation plus nothing until 2020, so overall fares are increasing by 1.1 per cent.

“At the same time, Crawley is seeing the results of investment in the rail network. Last year the new traincare facility at Three Bridges launched – this will help house and maintain the new 1,140 carriage fleet for the expanded Thameslink network, due for completion in 2018.

“While passenger numbers have doubled it is vital that the network continues to be upgraded.”

Labour figures stated the price of the season ticket rose to £3,508 from £3,476 in 2015.

The fare had increased by a quarter from £2,804 in 2010, which was the year when the Conservative Party formed a coalition government with the Liberal Democrats.

Mr Smith and other Sussex MPs plan to raise concerns with the Rail Minister Claire Perry at a meeting on January 18.

He said: “I’m well aware that some train services recently have been sub-standard – as a commuter to London I’ve also seen cancelled services and standing room only on non-peak trains.

“Later this month I’ll be joining with other local MPs in meeting with the Rail Minister and rail network bosses to tell them Crawley commuters deserve better.”

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