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Im no fan of the Daily Mail for quality news but this is there article . There's also a similar titled article in Daily telegraph but thats behind a paywall. Essence is Treasury have reduced amount of subsidy available from 21/22 tax year A fifth of rail services could be cut next year...
The key messages regarding transport, namely "essential travel only" and "private good, public bad", will have to continue for much of 2021. It will take years to reverse this trend as these messages will have become ingrained. A return to public transport use is only likely to occur where there are incentives to use it, namely for long distance inter-city journeys and in urban areas where there is road congestion. Therefore, in addition to cutting excess peak frequencies, cuts should be focussed on lightly used branch lines and secondary routes in rural areas, which is why I suggested that the DfT could consider retrieving the Serpell report and reconsidering it. Cutting routes in Scotland and Wales in particular, even if unpopular, is unlikely to lose many seats for the Tories.The problem is the government messaging over the 9 months has scared many from using public transport. Even when restrictions were at their lightest over the summer the message was only use public transport if you have no alternative. Too many now associate public transport a being a place where may get ill, partly as that is because the government have been telling them that.
Next year the railways are going to need to highlight the advantages they have over other forms of transport and reassure people that they are not laden with disease if they want to get people back using them.
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