Stoke-on-Trent rail users blast train companies as fares to rise by 2.3%

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Stoke-on-Trent commuters voiced their outrage today as they face another hike in rail fares.

Passengers spoke out after London Midland and Virgin Trains unveiled new prices to kick in from January 2, 2017.

The 2.3% rise has angered many because the Consumer Prices Index, on which fares are generally based, is currently 0.9%.

Victoria Bentley, 19, who regularly commutes from Burton to Stoke-on-Trent, said: “I think it is unfair on people who travel a lot, for everyday travel it’s ridiculous!”

Olivia Murphy, 17, a regular rail user in Stoke-on-Trent, said: “I think it is ridiculous.

“I think they shouldn’t go up every year and it shouldn’t be that expensive just to travel home or to your education, I just think fares shouldn’t be as high.”

Student Olivia Espley, 17, added: “The price range offered is not good for students to get them where they need to be.

She added: “The prices are not very good for what we are sort of getting at the minimum wage.”

Richard Stanton, spokesman for Virgin Trains, said: “The overall average change is 2.4% from January 2016 to January 2017, similar to the industry average.

“However, we have made thousands more bargain fares available every week – including almost 10,000 more London – Glasgow tickets for just £30.”

The latest “Train Right Time Performance” statistics show that just 57% of London Midland trains and 45.5% of Virgin West Coast trains are arriving on time.

London Midland declined to give a comment.

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