Clive Efford MP has forced Southeastern trains to accept that they got their new fares wrong.
Clive says, “In fact Southeastern left out zone three entirely. Anyone travelling from zone four to zone three paid the same fare as if they had travelled to zone two.”
For monthly season ticket holders this meant that their fare was £60.70 rather than £44.60. Passengers were being charged £4.00 for a peak return to Blackheath from Eltham instead of £3.30 Clive explained.
This matter was brought to Clive’s attention by constituents who had seen their season tickets go up by 63 per cent. Clive says, “My constituents wrote to Southeastern to complain about the scale of these increases before the new fares came in to force, so there is no excuse for them implementing the wrong fares. They chose to ignore their complaints and now they must compensate everyone who has been overcharged.”
Southeastern have now admitted that they have been overcharging passengers and have agreed to reimburse passengers.
The error also relates to passengers on the Woolwich Arsenal line and the New Eltham line. Anyone who has bought a ticket from stations in zone four travelling to stations in zone three should contact Southeastern for compensation. Clive would also like to hear from them.
Clive Efford has called on Southeastern Trains to compensate passengers who have been overcharged for rail tickets since the New Year.
Clive, who is a member of the influential Transport Select Committee, rang National Rail enquiries after a constituent complained that their monthly season ticket had increased by 67 percent. He discovered that Southeastern Trains are charging the same peak time fares for travelling from Eltham, in zone four, to Kidbrooke and Blackheath, in zone three, as they are for travelling to New Cross which is in zone two. “This means that passengers are being charged £4.00 for a peak return to Blackeath from Eltham instead of £3.30” Clive explained.
Clive says, “It got worse when I asked the price of a season ticket from Eltham to New Cross and the cost of the same ticket to go to Blackheath. The price for New Cross is £48 and the price for Blackheath is £60.70.
When Clive’s constituent complained, Southeastern tried to justify their price increases rather than look into them. “The fact that travelling from Eltham to New Cross a passenger must pass through Blackheath seems to be completely lost on Southeastern” said Clive.
Since the New Year fares on London rail fares have moved to a zonal system where prices are based on the number of zones a journey crosses or enters. Clive adds, “The changes to zonal train fares are in preparation for the Oyster Card and is bound to throw up some anomalies, but this is sheer incompetence”.
“It is clear that Southeastern have been overcharging my constituents” said Clive “and they must put this situation right at once and compensate passengers who have lost money in this way”.
Clive has written to the Government minister responsible for the railways asking him to help sort this mess out.
“I want people in Eltham and Plumstead to have their say in what should be in the government’s Climate Change Bill. The Bill will be one of the most important pieces of legilsation introduced in Parliament for many years. It will be published soon and the government is going to allow a great deal of time for people to comment upon it.
I want to encourage as many people as possible to participate in these discussions. If you live in the Eltham constituency then please get in touch.
The science behind global warming is now widely accepted. The recent report from Lord Stern, commissioned by Gordon Brown, showed that if we fail to deal with climate change now, we will face an economic as well as an environmental disaster.
The government has always taken climate change seriously. The UK has already met its Kyoto commitment to reduce carbon emissions and is committed to reaching its own tougher targets on greenhouse gas emissions by 2010. Now it wants to cut CO2 emissions by 60 per cent by the year 2050.
I have had numerous meetings with the environment minister David Miliband to discuss the Bill. I want to include your views in future discussions, so please get in touch. Whether or not we agree on the best way forward, your views are important and will become part of the consultation process.
Click here to get in touch to let me know what you think.”
Horn Park resident Frances Walker met Tony and Cherie Blair at a reception at 10 Downing Street last Monday. Frances was invited to the reception by Eltham MP Clive Efford.
The reception was held to honour ordinary men and women who had worked hard to help improve their local communities. “When Downing Street asked me to invite someone who had made a real difference to their local area, I told them I could fill their reception with people from my constituency who are working hard to improve their local communities.”
“But Frances was an obvious choice. She chairs the Horn Park Forum which brings together local residents with the local community centre, the council’s young people’s services, housing, the local police, Charlton’s charitable trust and London and Quadrant Housing Association. The Forum has already overseen major improvements in the park, where a new ball park and swing park have already been installed. The Forum has also worked closely with Charlton Athletic who run a number of football training schemes in the park. The Forum has achieved a lot in its first year, but there is still a lot to do. I would have liked to take the whole group, but Frances’ invitation is a tribute to everyone involved with the forum.”
Frances said, “it was really special experience that I have been able to tell my grandchildren about. I will never forget it.”
Clive Efford (Eltham) (Lab): I am grateful for this opportunity to make a contribution to the debate. My right hon. Friend the Member for Greenwich and Woolwich (Mr. Raynsford) and my hon. Friend the Member for Erith and Thamesmead (John Austin) have already outlined the issues relating to south London, and I am particularly pleased to see that under the motions on the Order Paper we are going to consider the Abbey Wood to Ebbsfleet extension. Continue reading