Train travel cost criticised after new TUC report

Early morning commuters at Stowmarket Railway Station
Early morning commuters at Stowmarket Railway Station
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Commuters have criticised the cost of train travel in 
Suffolk following the release of a report from the TUC’s Action for Rail campaign.

The report, published on Monday, shows that average train fares nationally have risen nearly three times faster than wages since the recession began.

The research shows that between 2008 and 2012, average fares went up by 26.6 percent, with average wages rising by just 9.6 percent.

Steve Corking, 47, an IT Consultant from Great Barton has been commuting to London from Stowmarket Rail Station for the past six years.

He said: “The service is no better but we are being charged extra for the privilege.

“Things like cheaper parking at the station would help but the trouble is that most people have no other option than to get the train - we are a captive audience.

“I don’t understand the justification for raising train fares but we have to pay them, we have to make the journeys that we do.”

A spokesman for the Association of Train Operating Companies (ATOC) said: “The TUC’s figure is misleading.

“The average price per journey actually paid by passengers over the last four years has gone up by 8.6 per cent, much less than the 18 per cent increase in inflation over the same period.

“The overall level of fares is determined by government policy.”

A manifesto of the updates required on Suffolk’s railway has been drawn up by Suffolk County Council, in advance of the end of Greater Anglia’s franchise in 2014.