Less choice, but we pay more

Click to follow
The Independent Online

More than a month since we started our Passenger Power campaign letters and emails are still pouring in from readers who have suffered at the hands of Britain's transport companies. Thousands of travellers are getting a rough deal on trains, on buses and on planes despite the promises made by the deregulated operators. Passenger Power aims to give them a voice.

More than a month since we started our Passenger Power campaign letters and emails are still pouring in from readers who have suffered at the hands of Britain's transport companies. Thousands of travellers are getting a rough deal on trains, on buses and on planes despite the promises made by the deregulated operators. Passenger Power aims to give them a voice.

Carl Townsend from Chatham in Kent was shocked to be charged £125 return with Virgin trains to travel to an open day at the University of Aberystwyth. This is because the journey meant travelling before 9 am. National Express coaches charged him just £28 for the journey.

Phil Moor objects to over-crowding on the Central Trains service from Stoke to Derby where he lives: "The train is often only one carriage long."

Londoner Philippa Lloyd is disgusted by the lack of adequate 24-hour transport facilities serving Heathrow Airport. When she missed the last Tube home at 10.55pm, the only transport into London was the night bus. She found a queue of more than 100 people for the bus, which didn't reach Trafalgar Square until 2.30am.

Colin Smith from Worcester is angry that Wales and West company has axed the main train from Cheltenham to Worcester, the 8.34am, despite campaigns to save the service. "There's not much more passengers can do. We have three choices: travel on the train at 6.06am or 10.08am or don't travel on the train at all."

Colin Harrow who lives in Castle Cary, Somerset, says the First Great Western company has abolished the 9.26am, the only reasonably priced train that will get him to London for the start of his working week.

Anthony Jowsey from Stockton on Tees wrote to complain about National Rail Enquiries, a service he likens to swimming through treacle. He wanted to travel to Kingussie in the Highlands and was told that the fare would be £63 from Stockton station - except it has been closed for ticket sales for 15 years. So he had to buy his ticket at Middlesbrough - for £76.10.

Ian Main is angry about Stagecoach buses, which runs the service from Hopeman to Elgin. Most of the passengers are pensioners who have lost their concession of a 20p fare. Instead they have to pay £1.07 for the six-mile journey.

If you want to tell us about your transport problems, write to Passenger Power, Independent on Sunday, 1 Canada Square, London E14 5DL or email passengerpower@independent.co.uk.

Comments