Some of you may have come across the Euronews website. In case you missed this, they recently published a bulletin listing lots of news about new and improved services which will be running across many European countries this year. As well as lots of information, there are also some useful links to Traveller blogs- for example – 14 days around Italy and a rail trip across 9 different countries. There is even one by a seasoned rail campaigner who during 2 months last summer took 150 trains across 28 different countries in the European Economic area. See: https://www.euronews.com/travel/2022/12/28/flight-free-travel-europes-new-long-distance-train-routes-for-2022 And see also: https://www.euronews.com/travel/2022/07/22/meet-the-man-battling-to-fix-europe-s-trains-via-an-epic-40-day-journey
As we face a Climate Emergency, why is it still so hard and expensive to use Eurostar-the greenest way to travel to and from Europe? Eurostar has been continually ” strangled” ever since its birth when the first train ran through the Channel Tunnel in November 1994. The responsibility for all this clearly lies with the UK Government. This is mainly due to their ideological obsession of privatising all major infrastructure projects. How has this happened ? 1 – The track access charges per kilometer that Eurostar has to pay to the owners of the Channel Tunnel have always been set much higher than the average across Europe. 2 – The need for all passengers to go through airport style
Thanks to investment in the High-Speed Network, for several years it has been possible to take daytime trains from London to many parts of Northern and Eastern Spain. This is not quite so easy for those living further away from London or not wanting a long daytime journey with one or more changes along the way. However, there are many places along the way which could make a very pleasant stop-over to break up the journey. Have a look at this link for some interesting ideas :- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vGR3ipqyjes&list=PL8w-BAm7lVzfnTCJauwicMo0-eeYPkE0h
Seasoned rail campaigner Jon Worth will be taking to the rails on June 14th on a 40 day journey where he aims to discover how easy or difficult it might be to travel by train from one EU country to another. He will be crossing every border within the EU , Switzerland and Norway travelling by train and bicycle in areas where there should be a proper rail connection. In each country he will be meeting with activists and politicians to encourage decision-makers to take action to restore these missing links. The campaign is called CrossBorderRail and to find out more you should visit https://crossborderrail.trainsforeurope.eu/
After greeting 500 other activists, a few politicians and railway managers on 30th October off the “Rail to the the COP” first leg on Eurostar at London St Pancras, our roving reporter Ian McDonald then guided them to their special Avanti West Coast train at London Euston for the 2nd leg of their journey. He then went onto Glasgow a week later for the Transport Day of debate and action on 10 November. While he was there you can see that he took the opportunity to promote our campaign. Most people he spoke to agreed that investment in railways rather than battery powered cars is far more effective in combating climate change.