Campaign for Better Transport has responded to figures from the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) showing that Britain’s rolling stock is at its oldest age in 14 years. despite falling between 2000 (21 years) and 2005 (13 years), the average age of all rolling stock has steadily risen since then (20 years).
Martin Abrams, Public Transport Campaigner for Campaign for Better Transport, said: “These figures are not particularly surprising as we know thousands of passengers are travelling on trains simply not fit for purpose. In the north of England for instance passengers are still having to endure the decrepit old Pacer trains. The problem is there’s no national rolling stock strategy from the Government and that’s what needs to change. The Government needs to come up with a plan to replace outdated rolling stock and ensure passengers have trains fit for the 21st century.”
Martin continued: “The Government must ensure that the Northern Powerhouse is not derailed by lack of investment when the new Northern and TransPennine Express franchises are announced in December. We were glad when the commitment was made to use these franchise agreements to get rid of the Pacers, and this ambition needs to be translated into real action in the north of England and replicated across the country so our rolling stock doesn’t become a laughing stock.”