High rail prices slammed

Jane Basham ANL-141119-140508001
Jane Basham ANL-141119-140508001
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Campaigners in Sudbury have condemned New Year fare increases and slammed the standard of rail service received by the town.

Following an early morning picket held from 6.30am on Monday at Sudbury station, some commuters have rounded on the Government and backed calls for rail to be brought back under public control.

The reaction was against the price of tickets, with an annual season ticket to London from Sudbury now costing £4,700.

Local ‘Action for Rail’ campaigner and vice chair of South Suffolk Labour Party, Jane Basham said: “This is the third year I’ve supported Action for Rail’s campaign - the message hasn’t changed.

“We spoke with commuters paying £4,700 a year plus the cost of car parking.

“We met those who wanted a flexible approach to purchasing discounted season tickets in order for them to work part time in London and part time at home.”

Criticising South Suffolk MP James Cartlidge’s campaign to get a direct link from Sudbury to London, Mrs Basham said: “Not one person prioritised a direct link to London. They know it’s not going to happen under the current fragmented system. We were welcomed by commuters.”

Joanne Cox of Friars Street, Sudbury said: “My husband’s rail fare has increased by £60 a month since we moved here three years ago.

“The service is terrible. He is lucky that he has an understanding employer - he is often delayed.

“He’s regularly home late as there are, of course, additional difficulties when you miss a connection and have to wait another hour.”

Mrs Basham added: “Overwhelmingly travellers were outraged that billions of pounds of taxpayers’ money subsidises foreign interests and they want to see our railways brought back under public control – run for passengers, not profit.”

In November the line was closed for 13 days following heavy leaf fall in East Anglia.