A HUDDERSFIELD transport expert has insisted rail nationalisation is not the way forward.
Prof Colin Bamford, who has developed a range of globally-respected courses in transport and logistics at the University of Huddersfield, is frank about the problems underpinning railways in Britain.
“We are trying to run a 21st century railway on a Victorian system.
“We have never got to grips with whether we should be providing railways on the same basis that we provide the NHS, as a social service, or whether they should be treated as a business.
“We have now come round to the view that it should be a bit of both and we have got quite clear guidelines in place for that, but if you compare it to Germany, Italy, France and even some of the Eastern European countries, we have just not been prepared to invest in the rail network.”
Prof Bamford, who is Associate Dean of Applied Sciences, does not subscribe to the view to re-nationalise in the wake of National Express’s pullout from the East Coast main line.
“What’s important for us is to tweak the current structure and make sure we get the best possible economic and social benefits”.
He added: “It is scandalous that it costs £228 to travel between Huddersfield and Kings Cross if you want to just turn up at the station and get there by half past ten. If you have your family with you, you are talking about nearly a thousand pounds!”
Prof Bamford will give a free public lecture at the university on December 3 on railway issues. For details ring 01484 422288.