Shasha Khan, the Green Party’s parliamentary candidate for Croydon North, was canvassing rail commuters this morning, as they were returned to work after the Christmas break and were hit by a double whammy of another above-inflation fares hike and badly disrupted services from East Croydon.
The Greens have announced that they would implement a 12 per cent cut in rail fares if they are elected to government. So that’s not going to happen then…
“We must reject the business-as-usual model that allows ticket prices to escalate,” Khan said.
“The Green Party is committed to developing solutions that will deliver a quality and affordable service to passengers all across the country.”
The Greens have also backed the gathering call for the railways to be brought back into public ownership, with demonstrations organised at King’s Cross, St Pancras, and Waterloo stations. Green Party MP Caroline Lucas also presented a Private Members Bill calling for the railways to be brought back into public ownership.
Ticket prices across the railway network have increased by an average of 2.2 per cent this New Year. The cost of rail travel is now increasing at three times the rate of average wages. In some parts of the country, an annual season ticket represents more than 25 per cent of the average salary.
The Green Party has said it would introduce an immediate cut in rail and bus fares by increasing the investment in public transport paid for by the government by £1.7 billion per year.
Under the plans announced today, the Green Party would cut the cost of an annual Zone 1-4 London Travelcard by £184 and reduce the cost of a Zone 1-2 Tube ticket from £2.80 to £2.60. Passengers traveling between Crystal Palace and London Bridge – one of the capital’s busiest routes – would benefit from savings of up to £115 per year.
Peter Underwood, the Greens’ candidate in Croydon South, said: “The rail network is being run for private profit not public service.”
Underwood also raised the issue of the reduction in services for commuters in Coulsdon. He said: “This year passengers face yet another above-inflation rise in ticket prices while services and routes are changed to suit rail companies, not commuters. Only the Green Party is working to bring rail back into public hands.”
The Greens’ third Croydon parliamentary candidate, Esther Sutton, dismissed Labour’s campaign to rezone East Croydon and West Croydon Stations as “just tinkers at the edges of the problem”.
Sutton’s Labour opponent in Croydon Central, Sarah Jones, launched a campaign in the autumn to bring the borough’s two busiest stations into Transport for London’s Zone 4, with the effect of saving commuters around £340 a year on their season tickets (at the pre-2015 rise rates).
“This fails to consider all those other Zone 5 areas that are geographically the same distance away from central London and just tinkers at the edges of the problem,” Sutton said.
“The correct solution is to cut fares across the board and then move to bring the railways back into public hands.”
Coming to Croydon
- David Lean Cinema, Mr Turner, Jan 8
- David Lean Cinema, Leviathan, Jan 13
- Norwood Society talk: Penge, the making of a suburb, Jan 15
- David Lean Cinema, The 78 Project Movie, Jan 15
- David Lean Cinema, Hannah Arendt, Jan 20
- David Lean Cinema, The Imitation Game, Jan 22
- South Croydon business breakfast, Jan 24
- David Lean Cinema, Night Will Fall, Jan 27 (Holocaust Memorial Day)
- David Lean Cinema, Kon-Tiki, Jan 29
- Soul Symphony Community Choir taster session, Feb 3
- Norwood Society talk: Crystal Palace and Dulwich, Feb 19
- Amy Wadge and Luke Jackson, Stanley Halls, Feb 28
- Norwood Society talk: Charlies Dickens in Norwood, Mar 19
- Norwood Society: Balloons and airships at Crystal Palace, Apr 16
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