Privatisation is ruining railway

The ongoing difficulties with Southern Rail and other franchises are due to management intransigence ('˜Travel hell as talks between union and rail operators continue', August 12).

As for the Department for Transport, which issues franchises and is supposed to be neutral, an outburst by the civil servant in charge of rail shows it to be hostile to rail workers.

The dispute is actually about business, and the priority of business is to maximise profit.

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Costs that can be eliminated or passed on to others are actively pursued. Doing away with guards is part-and-parcel, as is automation.

Privatisation is ruining the railways. We no longer have a service, just a string of for-profit companies.

Yet survey after survey shows a big majority in favour of public ownership.

This is our railway, paid for by us over decades, a service for the people.

The fight goes on. That it is condemned by the government is a mark of our determination and their contempt for the ordinary citizen whom they are supposed to represent.

Stephen Jackson

Albert Road


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