Commuters have welcomed plans for a half-hourly rail service between Lynn and London King’s Cross despite an increase in fares.
For the first time, the cost of an annual season rail ticket has gone above the £5,000 mark as plans were announced to improve the Ely North junction allowing a half-hourly service to run.
Roger Perkins, from First Capital Connect, said: “We understand how difficult any rise in fares can be but it is the Government that decides the average rise in season tickets to pay for continued investment in the railways.
“In fact, on average, only 3p in every £1 train companies receive is profit.”
An annual season ticket from Lynn to London King’s Cross now costs four per cent more, it has risen from £4,980 to £5,180, while a annual ticket from Lynn to Cambridge has risen from £1,992 to £2,072.
Architect Michael Whiting, 46, from South Wootton, has been commuting for several years. He travels to Crystal Palace and Soho a couple of times a week and thinks the service is “pretty good”.
He said: “It has always been good value for money but it would be helpful to have more trains coming in to the station. The expense it not really a problem for me because the company pays for my travel.”
Peter Weston, 38, a charity manager from Flitcham, has been commuting to London two or three times a week for over five years.
He said: “The trains could do with updating but they are not the worst I’ve been on.
“Travelling is costly, but necessary for work. It would be useful to have more trains, especially for coming home then you wouldn’t have to wait around for an hour if you miss one.”
Tom Diamond, 25, from South Wootton, commutes to Addenbrooke’s Hospital, in Cambridge, to work as a research physiologist. He has been doing this journey every weekday for three years.
He said: “I think the service is pretty good but any improvement could only be a good thing for the area.
“I don’t think I will notice the difference in cost much because the money is split between my pay each month so I get the best deal.”
Megan Lee, 20, also commutes to Cambridge every day, where she works as a shop assistant, and has been commuting for eight months. She said: “The service you get on the trains all depends on whether the train is running on time and I find myself delayed quite often.
“I don’t think it is very good value for money because I am travelling such a short distance. It is cheaper for me to drive.
“If there were more trains it would help me, but I’m not happy about paying more than I already am.”
Amy Eglen, 19, from Lynn, is commuting to London for two weeks while on work experience with a film company.
She said: “I think the rail service is quite good when it is on time, but when I was travelling home the other night they hadn’t even turned the heaters on in the train and it was freezing.”
She disagrees with the rise in train fares and the plans for introducing a half-hourly service.
She said: “It’s not bad value for money because I have a rail card but without that it would cost me a fortune to travel. I’m not sure more trains are necessary in Lynn station and I wouldn’t be happy about paying more.”
With most hailing half-hourly trains as a necessary move for Lynn’s rail station, the increase in fares has taken a backseat for many.
Go to www.firstcapitalconnect.co.uk for more information about fare prices.