August 18th Demonstration at Waterloo station to oppose rail fare increases

Thursday 30th July 2015

Circular No. National Policy NP/136/15/BO

To the Secretary all London, Greater Anglia and South East branches,
Council of Executive members, London, Greater Anglia, Wessex and South East Regional Councils, and Regional Offices.

Dear Colleagues,

August 18th Demonstration at Waterloo station to oppose rail fare increases

Rail fares for season tickets, and other regulated fares, have risen nearly three times faster than wages over the last five years. Between 2010 and 2015 fares increased by 25 per cent while average pay went up by just 9 per cent.

The government has announced plans to cap regulated rail fares at the Retail Price Index (RPI) measure of inflation for this parliament. However, the public will finance the fare cap through paying their taxes. The capping of rail fares will cost taxpayers around £700 million over the next five years, according to the Department for Transport’s own figures.

Burt research commissioned by the TUC’s Action for Rail, of which RMT is a member, shows that £1.5bn could be saved over the next five years if routes, including the Northern, Transpennine and West Coast Main Line, were returned to the public sector. A third (£520 million) of this would come from recouping the money private train companies pay in dividends to their shareholders.  

RMT and Action for Rail will mark the August RPI inflation announcement which is the figure used to calculate the increase with a protest at Waterloo station. We will hand out postcards highlighting the huge cost of rail privatisation. The postcards will call on MPs to put people before profits and return our railways to public ownership.

The demonstration will take place at Waterloo between 8-9.00am when AFR will unfurl a banner and hand out new campaign postcards to passengers.

All RMT activists and members who are available to attend are urged to do so on the day. All the unions are invited so we want to ensure a colourful and visible RMT presence.
Please do all you can to build for this important demonstration.

Thanking you in anticipation

Yours sincerely,

Mick Cash
General Secretary