RAIL passengers in Rochdale are being ripped off by ticket prices that are 20% higher than for commuters in neighbouring towns, MP Simon Danczuk has revealed.
Speaking in a Parliamentary debate on the cost of public transport, Mr Danczuk asked the Government to look into ticket pricing in Rochdale which rail campaigners have branded “artificially high”.
Peak time journeys into central Manchester from Rochdale are more than £1 more expensive than a comparable commute from Bolton.
Addressing Patrick McLoughlin, Secretary of State for Transport, Mr Danczuk said: “A peak return fare from Bolton to Manchester Victoria will set Bolton constituents back £6.40.
“But my constituents pay £7.70 for the similar journey from Rochdale to Manchester Victoria.
“Why is that? Richard Greenwood, chairman of the Support the Oldham-Rochdale-Manchester Rail Lines group, has said that the fares in my constituency are ‘artificially high’.
“That level of fares applies almost nowhere else in the country, and I see no fit reason for it to apply to Rochdale either. Perhaps the Minister will share his thoughts?”
Speaking afterwards, Mr Danczuk said: “Many Rochdale residents travel by train at peak times to jobs in Manchester and elsewhere.
“Since 2010, rail fares across the UK have shot up by a staggering 25%.
“Taken together with the higher ticket prices in our town, hardworking Rochdale residents are left paying over the odds.
“The Secretary of State for Transport needs to address this unfair pricing system.”