Yorkshire rises to the occasion while Northern Rail fails

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From: Peter Hunter, Church Road, Altofts, Normanton.

I WISH to add my thanks to the groups and individuals who provided me with on unforgettable weekend of entertainment at the Grand Départ.

Gary Verity is the obvious candidate for the role of President of an independent Yorkshire. When he attains that post, hopefully he will be able to oversee the reform of our rail services.

Following advice to use public transport, and promises from Northern Rail to provide extra services, I purchased tickets from Castleford to Harrogate three weeks in advance. On the day, no extra capacity was evident at Castleford and a succession of trains, dangerously filled to over-capacity, arrived and departed leaving a platform full of disappointed passengers.

Tickets were sold under the false promise of extra capacity. I am left with unused tickets, the proceeds of which go to bolster the profits of this failing company.

From: ME Wright, Grove Road, Harrogate.

MODESTY is not the foremost of Yorkshire traits, but I think we even managed to surprise ourselves with Le Tour. What came as no surprise was the miserable performance of the railways (The Yorkshire Post, July 8). A visiting French couple commented, with almost English understatement, that there had been a problem with the Leeds-Harrogate trains. I managed to steer away from the fact that the problem, on this and other lines, was perpetual, historic and showing no sign of improvement. I didn’t dare to mention comparative fare levels with the rest of Europe.

You ask for an energetic leader who recognises that the railway is a public service first and foremost. Is there any chance of that when a myopic, obsessive “bottom line” culture prevails at government level? They cannot or will not apply the norms of mainland Europe, where the provision of efficient and affordable public transport underpins business and social life so effectively. In Germany, there are tickets valid on all trains, trams and buses in the country. Can you imagine the roars of dismissive laughter if that were suggested here?

From: Martin J. Phillips, Tinshill Lane, Cookridge.

I THINK Northern Rail can say “Au revoir” to any chance they may have had of renewing their franchise contract. The firm’s inadequacy over Le Tour weekend is the final nail in its coffin.