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Page last updated at 07:38 GMT, Tuesday, 16 August 2011 08:38 UK

Rail fare rise 'will go ahead'

With inflation predicted to hit 5%, rail passengers in England and Wales can expect fares to go up by 8% in January.

"We will be going ahead with these real term increases in rail fairs," rail minister Theresa Villiers told Sarah Montague.

The money raised was necessary, she said, for the programme of rail upgrades and capacity improvements designed to relieve crowding on the network.

"It is essential that we deliver this programme of rail investments, it's the biggest, probably, since the Victorian era," she said.

But rail analyst Christian Woolmar said the price rise would be a "big hit", especially for season ticket holders.

"This drives people away from the railways," he warned.

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