Passengers have paid £50bn for rail privatisation

12 June 2017

Rail privatisation is ‘financially flawed’ according to a new report from academics at Queen Mary and Essex universities which finds that the cost of running the railway has increased by £50bn since the sell-off in 1995.


The study suggests that the impact of unnecessarily expensive track upgrades, excessive train leasing costs, the bureaucracy of the rail franchising system and train operating company profits have been passed on to passengers through inflated fares over the last two decades.


Commenting on the findings ASLEF General Secretary Mick Whelan said ‘this new research follows the Transport Select Committee and many others in highlighting the lie that rail privatisation would deliver better value for money and cheaper fares. It has, in fact, delivered huge inefficiencies which staff, passengers and taxpayers continue to pay the price for.’


Mick added ‘the £50 billion of losses could have paid for the first phase of HS1. The government has no strategy for making the railway more efficient. It is ideologically blind to the benefits of public ownership.’

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