Rail fare campaigners, environmental groups and trade unions are staging a demonstration at Waterloo Station on Tuesday 16 August on the day commuters find out how much extra they’ll be ‘expected to fork out on train fares next year’.
The demonstration, which is being organised by the Fair Fares Now campaign with support from Bring Back British Rail, Climate Rush, RMT and TSSA, will coincide with the latest retail price index (RPI) announcement from the Office of National Statistics.
The Government announced in the Spending Review that regulated fares will increase by RPI+3% for three years from 2012 with July’s RPI figure used to calculate the following January’s rise. Fares are expected to increase by 8% on average – four times faster than wages.
The demonstration will include speeches from the organisers and other prominent spokespeople and then campaigners will pop giant balloons to show that it’s ‘time to burst the bubble on inflation-busting fare hikes’.
Commuters will be invited to sign a national petition against further fare hikes and write messages to the Government on giant rail tickets.
Fair Fares Now is a national campaign from sustainable transport charity Campaign for Better Transport.
Alexandra Woodsworth, Campaign for Better Transport’s public transport campaigner, said:
“Affordable rail travel is vital for passengers, for the environment and for our workforce. These massive fare rises will be a disaster for people already struggling with rising costs, and risk pricing those on lower incomes out of jobs in our major cities.
“This demonstration is sending a clear message to Government that the country simply can’t afford fare rises on such a punitive scale. It’s time to burst the bubble on inflation-busting fare hikes.”