Great train robbery: MPs visit South West London stations to campaign against fare hikes


Leader of Merton Council Stephen Alambritis visited South Wimbledon and Morden stations


By SWLondoner staff

Politicians visited South West London train and tube stations this morning to protest against the increasing cost of travel.

Leader of Merton Council, Councillor Stephen Alambritis, was joined by Mitcham and Merton MP Siobhain McDonagh at South Wimbledon and Morden stations during this morning’s rush hour.

The pair, who also visited Wimbledon Station, handed out leaflets about fare increases, ahead of an average rise of 2.7% across the Transport for London network.

“We had a good reception despite the horrific weather,” said Cllr Alambritis.

“As soon as people realised what we were doing they were keen to take a leaflet – it was very encouraging.”

Fare increases across TfL are set to be implemented on January 19, but other increases on the rail network have already come into effect. Some commuters now have to pay more than £5,000 per year, as a number of tickets have risen on average by 3.1%

Transport Minister Stephen Hammond told the BBC: “Fares are rising but at the lowest they’ve ever done in the last decade and that’s because this government recognises the concerns that people have about rail fares.

“Also this government is investing £16bn in the maintenance and upgrade of our railways over the next five years to ensure that there will be benefits for passengers like extra capacity.”

Cllr Alambritis added that the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, needed to think more carefully about the benefits of a 24-hour tube system, which is set to be implemented by 2015.

“The government is proposing to close all ticket offices across the capital, which would results in hundreds of job losses.

“We believe that before the mayor starts boasting that tubes will be open through the night, he should think about the effect doing away with ticket offices will have.

“We are a big city which attracts a lot of tourists, many of whom may find it difficult to use the machines. Sadly, it seems as though the decision has already been made, but with enough public support we hope this could change.”

Photo courtesy of tompagenet, with thanks.

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