Anti-rail fare rise plan hits the buffers

07:34 10 January 2013

Commuters have already experienced rail fare rises. Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Commuters have already experienced rail fare rises. Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

A bid to derail proposals for new super peak rail fares failed in the Commons last night.

The Labour Party had called on MPs to condemn the proposal, which would see higher fares at peak times in a bid to spread congestion on the railways.

But the Government comfortably won the Commons vote by 311 to 237, a majority of 74 after Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin claimed Labour plans would have seen even higher fares.

Shadow transport secretary Maria Eagle admitted Labour had not done enough on rail fares in office and pledged to remove the flexibility train companies have to impose rises well above inflation on some tickets.

She told MPs: “In future, if we get the chance, we will... put it into law so that commuters always know that the cap on fare rises set by ministers is the cap that they actually see at the ticket office.

“I have said before that the last Labour government should have been bolder in taking on the train companies and should have done so sooner but the important fact is that when times got tough we acted.

“This Government is just clobbering commuters even more.”

Mr McLoughlin said: “This Government has capped fare rises and we’re getting the investment in, we’re tackling overcrowding, increasing seats on services and delivering High Speed 2.

“The right deal for passengers and the right deal for Britain’s future.”

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