We pile you on, and charge you more: Manchester commuters face trains 55% over capacity – then hit with price hike

By Chris Higgins

A rammed commuter route from Manchester Airport has been named one of the busiest train journeys in Britain.

The 6:23am to Middlesbrough is the seventh most overcrowded train in the country, running at 55% over capacity according to government figures released today.

The route, most used by commuters travelling to Leeds for the work shift, is also set to be hit by the fares rise this January.

After the planned 4.2% increase in regulated fare prices on January 2, an annual season ticket from the airport to Leeds will rise from £3724 to £3880.

Despite the price hikes no changes have been made to the service since autumn 2011, however First TransPennine Express (FTPE), the company running the service, have placed an order for more carriages.

The ten new trains are set to arrive in late 2013, featuring four carriages each capable of seating 210 passengers.

Nick Donovan, FTPE’s managing director said: “The procurement of an additional 40 carriages will help to provide a much needed increase in seating capacity in response to growing customer demand.”

The Department for Transport survey, carried out over autumn last year, found that the busiest route in terms of crowding was the 7.44am Henley-on-Thames to Paddington train, at 80% over capacity.

After publishing the figures, the DfT said the First Great Western company had recently added an extra carriage to the 7.44am train, taking the number of standard-class seats to 340.

Picture courtesy of psd, with thanks

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