Majority of Brits back rail nationalisation, Sky data poll shows

2 January 2018, 16:33

A clear majority of the public support nationalising British railways, an exclusive Sky Data poll has revealed.

Some 60% of Britons support bringing the country's rail network back into public ownership, while 20% oppose it. Nine percent were neutral, while 11% answered 'don't know'.

:: In numbers: UK rail fares vs rest of Europe

Support is slightly up from when Sky Data last asked the question in 2015, when 55% supported the policy and 23% opposed it.

This comes on the back of the biggest increase in rail fares for five years coming into effect. Ticket prices have risen by an average of 3.4%, with some commuters now spending up to five times as much of their salary on season tickets as people on the continent.

:: MP demo goes off the rails amid train breakdown

The Department for Transport said the price rises were capped in line with inflation and paid for investment in several ambitious rail projects, including Crossrail.

Almost three quarters of Britons, 73%, say this increase is unfair, with 14% saying it is fair. Thirteen percent answered 'don't know'.

:: Sky Views: Rail privatisation has been a success

People in London, where 50% of train journeys in Britain start or finish, are unsurprisingly the most opposed to the fare hike, with 80% deeming it unfair - though a clear majority oppose the rise across every region.

Younger people are also more likely to oppose the price rises, with 79% of 18-34s saying they are unfair, falling to 69% - still a large majority - among those aged 55 and older.

Sky Data interviewed a nationally representative sample of 1,042 Sky customers by SMS on 2 January 2018. Data is weighted to the profile of the population.

For full Sky Data tables, please click here.