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Rail fare rises provoke political protest outside Watford Junction station
The latest round of train fare price hikes has provoked protests and calls to renationalise the rail networks in Watford.
The above inflation rises in the price of a season ticket means commuters now have to pay £2,868 a year, 20 per cent more than in 2010.
On Monday Labour shadow cabinet office minister, Michael Dugher MP, and the party’s parliamentary candidate Matt Turmaine protested outside Watford Junction.
Mr Turmaine, who is also a councillor on Watford Borough Council, said: "The rise in rail fares under this Lib Dem/Tory government is hitting commuters from Watford and Bushey really hard.
"Both parties are out of touch and doing nothing about the cost of living crisis which is affecting everyone."
Michael Dugher, MP for Barnsley East, said: "The rise in rail fares and inaction from government underlines that David Cameron doesn't have answers to Britain's cost-of-living crisis.
"We have heard about 'hard truths' from ministers but the real truth is it's hard times for commuters.
"This out of touch government is letting hard-working families down by focusing on a privileged few."
The Watford Green Party has also responded to the recent rises and called for railway system to revert to public ownership, and Watford Borough Green councillor Ian Brandon lead a protest against the price rise.
In the House of Commons, Green MP Caroline Lucas has a private members bill for full renationalisation, listed for its second reading on February 28.
Councillor Brandon said: "Some people were saying the rise was not as bad as previous years but others said ‘enough is enough’.
Green councillor Ian Brandon.
"We can’t keep on going on like this when wages are increasing much slower than rail prices. We want people to contact their local MPs to ask them to back Caroline Lucas’s bill."
She said: "By taking back individual franchises when they expire, or when companies fail to meet their conditions, the Government could save over £1 billion a year every year. This is money that could and should be reinvested in services, and also used to reduce fares."
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