How can we give motorists and railway passengers a better deal?

September 27, 2012 3:03 PM

Earlier this week I spoke at a PoliticsHome event at Liberal Democrat Party Conference sponsored by the Association of Train Operating Companies, Railways: Public Service or Private Profit. I made the case that taxpayers who mostly drive to work shouldn't be asked to pick up the bill for more railway subsidies, but we needed a much more efficient rail network so that doesn't mean higher prices for commuters already paying a fortune for their tickets.

My contribution was based on an article which I wrote for a Network Rail publication earlier in the year. It was interesting that Transport Minister Norman Baker made a similar case that the more efficient management of rail infrastructure was the key to more affordable train tickets. Research as part of the 2011 McNulty Review found that introducing separately owned regional infrastructure managers, for example, could improve efficiency and save billions. You can read my article here.

The huge fare increases coming in at the moment are a disaster for thousands of people who need to get to work, or who want to work but can only find a job a train journey from their homes. That doesn't mean we should accept calls to hammer motorists yet again. But it does mean that there is an urgent need to improve the efficiency of our relatively expensive rail network.Earlier this week I spoke at a PoliticsHome event at Liberal Democrat Party Conference sponsored by the Association of Train Operating Companies, Railways: Public Service or Private Profit. I made the case that taxpayers who mostly drive to work shouldn't be asked to pick up the bill for more railway subsidies, but we needed a much more efficient rail network so that doesn't mean higher prices for commuters already paying a fortune for their tickets.

My contribution was based on an article which I wrote for a Network Rail publication earlier in the year. It was interesting that Transport Minister Norman Baker made a similar case that the more efficient management of rail infrastructure was the key to more affordable train tickets. Research as part of the 2011 McNulty Review found that introducing separately owned regional infrastructure managers, for example, could improve efficiency and save billions. You can read my article here.

The huge fare increases coming in at the moment are a disaster for thousands of people who need to get to work, or who want to work but can only find a job a train journey from their homes. That doesn't mean we should accept calls to hammer motorists yet again. But it does mean that there is an urgent need to improve the efficiency of our relatively expensive rail network.

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