Commuters face the biggest rail fare hike in a decade from TODAY – just as the network threatens to be crippled by repairs over Easter
- The 5.9 percent increase in ticket prices is the largest increase in more than a decade
- Passengers will see scheduled travel during Easter affected by network repairs
- Seven of the eight lines will be hit by Network Rail projects over four days in April
Train fares are set to rise by the largest amount in more than a decade from today – just as the network threatens to be crippled by repairs over Easter.
The price increase of 5.9 percent is the largest since the 6.2 percent increase in 2011.
Meanwhile, fed up passengers – who are already bracing for more strikes – will see many of the 10 million scheduled journeys affected over the holiday weekend.
Seven of Britain’s eight major rail lines will be hit by Network Rail projects over the four days from April 7 to 10, with some tripping times.
Former transport minister Norman Baker, now spokesperson for the Campaign for Better Transport, said: “Passengers are already struggling with rising fares and strikes. So Easter engineering works will then be more misery for people who want to travel.
“There will be a lot of Easter work that needs to be done. But Network Rail must do the work efficiently and minimize track closures.’
The price increase of 5.9 percent is the largest since the 6.2 percent increase in 2011
One of the worst Easter shutdowns ever will see dozens of planned plans cost Network Rail tens of millions of pounds, with up to 20,000 engineers expected to be involved.
Britain’s busiest line, the West Coast Main Line, is completely closed from Good Friday to Easter Monday between London Euston and Milton Keynes. Usually 32 minutes straight, the journey takes over an hour and a half via a replacement bus service and an alternate train route. Trains from Liverpool terminate at Rugby.
Other works on the line will cause serious delays between Carlisle and Glasgow, and between Stafford and Crewe.
The Gatwick Express is canceled for four days and London Victoria is closed to most trains. There will be no Southeastern services from London Charing Cross on 8 and 9 April, some lines from London Liverpool Street will close and the new Elizabeth line will not run through central London.
Buses replace trains between Reading and Newbury and Woking and Winchester. Some services from Leeds will be discontinued and all lines between Peterborough and Norwich and Cambridge and Ely will be closed.
Other routes are gearing up for domino overcrowding, notably Chiltern Railways, whose nationwide services are likely to be swamped by passengers unable to travel between London and Birmingham on the West Coast Main Line.
Figures from the Government’s Office of Rail and Road show that the equivalent of one in 25 train services was canceled in the year to February 4, representing the worst-ever reliability in records dating back to 2014.