As reported in the Barnsley Chronicle, Barnsley News and Sport and Doncaster Free Press on 9th January, Stephanie has slammed the increases in train fares which will see rail users pay 3.2 per cent more for their tickets.
The price hike was introduced by train companies at the turn of the year, and research by the Labour Party shows that across the UK the average commuter will be paying £786 a year more than in 2010.
This shows regulated fares – including peak fares and season tickets – have increased by 36 per cent since 2010, nearly three times faster than wages.
A monthly ticket for Barnsley commuters to Leeds will now cost over £190, for instance, whilst a season ticket will cost little less than £2,000.
The hike comes as a blow to commuters after a year of rail chaos, with timetable changes and delays resulting in train punctuality reaching a 13-year low.
Meanwhile, the Trade Union Congress has claimed more than £1bn has been paid out to rail firm shareholders in the last 6 years alone, rather than reinvested back into the railways.
Commenting on the price hike, the local MP slammed rail companies and Transport Secretary Chris Grayling: “Following a year of chaos on our railways, rail companies have seen fit to hit commuters in their wallets with a staggering price hike.
“As if the persistently delayed, dilapidated, and crammed trains are not bad enough, commuters in Barnsley are now being forced to pay more for the privilege.
“Under hapless Transport Secretary Chris Grayling, who decided not to prevent these price hikes, our railways have become nothing short of a disgrace that fail thousands of commuters here in Barnsley every day.
“It’s high time our rail system was brought back into public ownership where funds can be reinvested and trains run in the interest of passengers, not private profit.”