Commuters hit with rail fare increase

Wakefield Westgate Railway station Wakefield
Wakefield Westgate Railway station Wakefield
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Rail commuters returning to work after the festive break faced a fare increase of 4.1 per cent.

Fares controlled by the government, which includes season tickets, rose by inflation, as measured by the retail price index (RPI), plus one per cent.

RPI was at 3.1 per cent in July, which is the month used to calculate rail fares.

The increase means that an annual season ticket from Wakefield Westgate to Leeds will cost £992, up from £964 last year.

Since 2007, West Yorkshire’s fare rise has been larger than other areas because of an extra three per cent to fund extra carriages on trains across the county.

Coun James Lewis, Metro chairman, said in August, that the deal had come to an end so there would be no extra charges next year.

A report published by The Campaign for Better Transport (CBT) said rail fares were rising so fast that by 2018 the Government would be making “a profit from passengers.”

The report found that within four years fares revenue would cover 103 per cent of the operating costs of the railway - up from 80 per cent in 2009.

Mary Creagh, MP for Wakefield, said: “David Cameron’s cost-of-living crisis continues for Wakefield families as fares rise this week.

“Over the last three years David Cameron has failed to stand up for working people in Wakefield, allowing train companies to hit passengers with inflation-busting fare rises of up to nine per cent.”

Train companies in England have licence to put up regulated fares, including season tickets, by up to two per cent above the agreed price-increase figure, which for 2014, is 3.1 per cent. Unregulated fares like off-peak leisure tickets are not capped.