The government today announced plans to invest £8billion into Britain’s railways, improving journeys for British rail passengers.
The plans, which include purchasing around 2,000 more carriages in a move to tackle overcrowding, were announced as rail passengers face further price rises. The extra carriages should bring a 17% increase in overall capacity.
Plans also include electrifying more lines than before and continuing work on the Thameslink programme. The investment will give rail users an improvement in services on certain lines in return for increased fares, but not all rail users will benefit.
Plans to improve the line between London Paddington and Swansea, which also serves Bristol and Cardiff, are still on hold and the planned improvements will take nearly a decade to complete.
With rail fares due to increase by an average of 6.2% in January, rail travellers will be looking for substantial improvements. Some commuters will see a rise of up to 12.8%. Those commuters may have to wait with the additional carriages delivered on a rolling basis, with only 650 to be delivered by 2014, with the rest due to be phased in by 2019.
Some may argue that the distribution of the carriages is unfair, with 1,200 of the carriages, over half, destined for the Thameslink line between Bedford and Brighton. This project is also due to finish two years later than originally planned.