RAIL operators are moving ever closer to a network completely rid of annoying passengers.
The 2.2 per cent rise in fares, which exceeds inflation and wage increases, will ensure fewer people can afford to take trains meaning fares will increase again next year.
A spokesman for South West Trains said: “It makes us just as mad as you when trains are late or fail to turn up, but we know that it’s all the fault of the grubby commuters who infest them like bacteria in a bloodstream.
“By 2017, only first-class passengers will be able to afford it, each with the luxurious four-person table they and their laptops deserve, and by 2023 train travel will be more expensive than private jet and we can stop making all those irritating stops at stations.
“Our gleaming train sets will shuttle gracefully around the country, always on time, their only contact with the public the vast subsidies they receive.”
Enthusiasts running steam railways have confirmed that they share this dream, and have asked customers to pay their fares then go away and let them carry on playing.