Rail reforms 'will lead to rising fares and lost jobs'
Rail passengers face higher fares under reforms which would see ticket offices closed and reductions in on-board staff, according to leaked documents.
A Government study into improving efficiency and increasing capacity on the railways will find fare structures are too complex, illogical, over-subsidised and do not effectively manage peak demand, the documents show.
It will say the railways are subject to too much state involvement and a growth in services has not been matched by greater efficiencies. The documents say costs are a "major problem" and need to be cut by 35 per cent to match Europe. There are plans to cut staff and to decentralise or break up Network Rail.
The unions have threatened industrial action over the plans, which were drawn up by Sir Roy McNulty, the former chairman of the Civil Aviation Authority, under the Rail Value for Money review. They were presented to industry leaders at a workshop last month. The final report will be presented to ministers next month. Sir Roy said: "Some fares [are] well below the level which [the] passenger would pay." His report will urge ministers to review fares policy and allow train operators to "take a more commercial approach" to ticket prices by lifting caps on fares and removing saver tickets from long-distance services. Train operators will also be encouraged to make more money from car parking.
Staffing on trains and ticket offices could be "significantly reduced" using modern technology. British railway workers are better paid and less productive than their European counterparts and drivers' contracts should be reviewed, the presentation said.
A Rail Delivery Group will be set up to cut costs and make better use of existing capacity. It will call for train-operating companies to have longer franchises of up to 15 years.
The plans put the Government on collision course with rail unions, with whom poor relations were identified as a "barrier to efficiency" by the study.
Bob Crow, general secretary of the RMT, said the largest rail union would "fight this attack on jobs, safety and service quality every step of the way".
- 1 Exclusive: Abusers using spyware apps to monitor partners reaches 'epidemic proportions'
- 2 Margaret Thatcher 'expressed fears of Asian rising' at Anglo-Irish summit in 1984
- 3 Sussex couple die in suspected Christmas Day 'suicide pact'
- 4 The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public set to see exhibits from police’s grisly crime museum
- 5 The Unluckiest People of the Year 2014 (and one very unlucky giraffe)
Exclusive: Abusers using spyware apps to monitor partners reaches 'epidemic proportions'
UK weather: Warning for more snow and ice as freezing temperatures and gales hit Britain
UK weather: Travel chaos continues as King's Cross train delays add to snow on roads
The Unluckiest People of the Year 2014 (and one very unlucky giraffe)
North Korea calls Barack Obama 'a monkey' in latest attack as 'The Interview' row festers
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
Immigrants make UK racist, says Ukip councillor Trevor Shonk
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever
Katie Hopkins speaks out on childhood obesity: 'Parents of fat children should be prosecuted for child cruelty'
Not specified: Selby Jennings: VP/SVP Credit Quant Top tier investment bank i...
£40000 - £43000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior Marketing Executiv...
£40000 - £43000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: An international organisa...
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Internal Recruiter -Rugby, Warwicksh...