British Rail was also badly run as Northern rail renationalised

From: Ross Taggart, The Avenue, Eaglescliffe, Stockton-on-Tees.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has returned rail operator Northern to public control.

IT is often said that policemen seem to become younger as time goes by, the same it seems can be said of professors.

The eminent academic 
who recently wrote a column 
in your journal extolling the virtues of rail re-nationalisation is, I imagine, too young to 
have experienced at first 
hand the tribulations visited on the long suffering public 
by British Rail (Colin Bamford, The Yorkshire Post, February 
19).

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How to turn Northern into Great Railway Journey - Tom Richmond
Rail operator Northern has one of the worst punctuality records in the country.

A combination of weak management, constant meddling by politicians and, most of all, a stranglehold exerted by overly mighty militant unions resulted in a ramshackle organisation offering a ramshackle service.

The never ending strikes as unions fought not just the politicians but each other for control; scruffy stations and scruffier trains (when they were actually running); an organisation in which the priority of customer service was a largely alien concept (sadly in line with a still prevailing public sector ethos); that was the reality of British Rail.

The unions saw the travelling public as cannon fodder to be used in the ‘fight’ to settle their grievance of the day, although as soon as that ‘grievance’ was settled another invariably appeared!

I agree that privatisation was hurried and botched in several ways, but the baby must not be thrown out with the bath water. Just imagine a rail network run by a combination of the RMT, a bunch of vote-catching politicians and a host of bureaucrats. A Socialist dream, no doubt, but you will never get to work on time.

From: Dr Roger Donaldson, Woodland Court, Leeds.

THE railways saga rumbles on. I was at Leeds Station to meet my younger daughter, home for a short break from her work with a charity in Mozambique.

She was stuck for a short while outside the station on the Huddersfield to Hull Transpennine Express as there was no platform available for it to dock.

Whilst waiting I heard of the cancellation for the TPE service to Liverpool due to ‘a member of staff not being available’.

I do hope that the idea of opening some of the ‘Beeching lines’ takes place.

From: Thomas Reed, Harrogate.

WE will know if the renationalisation of Northern has worked if Boris Johnson chooses to use the service when in the region.