Building Railways fit for the 21st Century
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats
Britain's railways are essential to everyday life - they transport millions to and from work and around the country day in, day out.
Unfortunately, all too often our trains are late, crowded or cancelled. Ticketing is a confusing mess and the railways and their rolling stock are in desperate need of investment.
Today, at our conference, we voted for a plan to start fixing all of these big issues and give Britain a railway network worthy of Sodor.
Here's how the Liberal Democrats would fix Britain's railways:
- Invest in improving commuting - we'd invest in improving existing commuter lines, as well as building new and re-opening old lines to improve capacity. We'd also invest in more light-rail and trams and invest in stations to transform them into transport hubs.
- We'd replace the ticketing system - and introduce greater use of travelcards, rolling out delay-repay to all operators and introducing early-bird fares.
- We'll create a railway agency - to ensure the railways are run by railway experts and improve accountability.
- Make the railway greener - by expanding electrification, reducing the use of diesel trains and expanding the use of wind and solar power at stations.
- Support HS2 and HS3 - we'll continue to support big infrastructure projects like crossrail, expand digital signalling and ensure that stations without step-free access are staffed from first to last train.
- Reform franchising - we'd open up the franchising process to public sector companies, local or combined authorities, not-for-profits and mutuals.
A Liberal Democrat Government will build a railway system that'll work for everyone and get millions more people onto trains and out of cars.
To see the motion in full, click here.