Passion is not enough

First Transpennine Express.
First Transpennine Express.

Coun Richard Rollins (Readers’ Views, January 8, Steps to improve our rail links) obviously has a great passion for the railways in this area and he makes some very salient points in his letter.

It is therefore disappointing that the Conservative group on the City Council, a group that Coun Rollins is a member of, failed to support a Labour group motion at the December council airing our concerns and indeed the concerns of many people about the future of the rail service, the recent exorbitant rail fare rise and the Government Consultation for the Transpennine Express Rail Franchises.

The motion was passed and sent to the Government but sadly Coun Rollins failed to recognise the merits of voicing our concerns about any proposed changes to the Rail Network.

The proposals in the consultation have many implications including cuts to services: driver only operated trains and staff reductions including conductors.

The RMT should be congratulated for the work they have done in highlighting this issue because the issue is about the future of our rail services as well as staffing and management issues.

It is immoral to price people out of rail travel when they are enforced to compete with fuel hikes and the ongoing increase in the cost of living. This rise in fares cannot come at a worse time.

Electrification of the Lancaster and Morecambe rail line is a fantastic objective but there will be costs and other implications. From where I am standing there are clearly more pressing issues to consider.

Coun David Whitaker

Labour Group.