Rail campaigners have given a cautious welcome to the Conservatives promise to limit rail fare increases to inflation for the next five years. "This is something we've been campaigning about for years, so we're pleased that politicians seem to be listening" said Bruce Williamson from the campaign group Railfuture. "Previously the government has increased fares above inflation whilst freezing fuel duty for motorists which we think is unfair. They haven't said which measure of inflation they will use, though. Until now they have used the higher RPI figure instead of the lower CPI figure, so limiting fare increases to RPI would amount to a real terms increase in fares."
"We also need to be reassured that this change in policy will not come at the cost of cuts to much-needed investment in the rail network. But one has to be suspicious of the timing of this announcement. Have the Conservatives finally woken up to the fact that rail passengers have votes? What are the other political parties going to do to meet the public perception that fares are too high and too complicated?”
Notes to editors:
Railfuture is the UK's leading independent organisation campaigning for betterrail services for both passengers and freight.
Railfuture's website can be found at: www.railfuture.org.uk
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For further information and comment please contact:
Bruce Williamson, media spokesman
Tel: 0117 927 2954 Mobile: 07759 557389
media at railfuture.org.uk