Local protests at rail price increases.

Birmingham stations part of national campaign.

Members of the public transport pressure group Action for Rail have been protesting at local mainline stations today, drawing attention to another inflation-busting leap in ticket prices.

That action, which is due to last until 6pm, is taking place at Birmingham International and New Street stations and comes on the back of an announcement that the cost of rail travel will be rising by an average of 4.1% from next January – the sixth time in seven years that rises have outstripped the cost of living according to the Trades Union Congress, who claim that rail privatisation costs taxpayers £1.2 million annually. Nationwide, over 50 stations have seen protests on behalf of the AfR and the TUC, who are calling for a return to public ownership of the rail network and an end to a system which sees government subsidies used to pay dividends to shareholders.

AfR regional organiser Ken Usher, who has been co-ordinating the protests in Birmingham, told us, “We’ve distributed more than 5,000 leaflets and have had a great response from commuters.”