The railway industry has called on transport secretary Grant Shapps and London mayor Sadiq Khan to put politics aside and agree on a long-term funding for Transport for London (TfL) just as the latest round of government bailout expires next Friday.
Trade body the Railway Industry Association (RIA) has written an open letter arguing that short-term funding “not only impacts services, but it also hits jobs, skills, innovation around the UK.”
“We appreciate that there are immense pressures on the public purse in these difficult times,” RIA’s chief executive Darren Caplan wrote.
“However, by coming together to agree a multi-year funding settlement for transport in the capital, government, TfL and the rail industry really can ensure that not only will passengers get the services they deserve, but that the taxpayer will also get the greatest bang for their buck whilst creating jobs and wider investment in both London and the national economy.”
The letter comes a day after the union Unite warned of a potential strike if TfL were to go ahead with its proposed cuts to bus services.
The public body announced on 1 June it would have to reduce the bus network by 4 per cent to comply with government pressures, cutting 78 of the current 620 bus routes.
TfL is required to achieve £400m in savings by financial year 2024/2025 as part of the conditions set by Westminster in exchange for government funding.