Ken Changes Tune Over 'Fare Dodging' Fine

By BethPH Last edited 110 months ago
Ken Changes Tune Over 'Fare Dodging' Fine

Picture courtesy of Jon Smalldon via the Londonist Flickr pool.
Ken Livingstone has urged train travellers to refuse to pay fines after being caught without a ticket.

The ex-mayor, who once ranted against fare-dodgers was travelling to Slough on First Great Western and blamed his lack of a ticket on late running Tube services. A sly swipe at his successor perhaps? If only Ken had managed to get them on board with Oyster this wouldn’t have happened.

Ken also claimed that First Great Western had made its ticket service deliberately difficult to use in an attempt to maximise revenue from penalty fares.

"We don't know where Mr Livingstone is coming from. We are sure that Mr Livingstone will agree with us that it's in the interests of the travelling public, and the taxpayers who help fund our railways, that passengers buy a ticket before they travel and that rail operators have systems in place to prevent and penalise fare evasion," a spokesman for First Great Western said with a tangible air of injured innocence.

Luckily for Ken, he won’t get a criminal conviction for failing to buy a ticket.

Last Updated 23 March 2009


Ahh, yet another article which looks as though it's a Standard syndication.

To be fair - Ken should have done what the rest of us have to do. Miss the train and wait for the next one. It's not as though there aren't enough trains from Paddington to Slough.

He has a point about FGW though. The French manage to have ticket machines that can do season ticket extensions, seat reservations, advance purchase, changes and refunds. The Germans let you print your tickets at home. FGW... don't.


The point was that Ken Livingstone campaigned against fare dodgers and then got caught without a ticket which (to me anyway) seemed deliciously ironic. Much like Boris Johnson getting caught not paying the congestion charge.

I'm not sure how pointing that out can be described as 'Standard syndication' but who am I to argue?


Always nice to see "Red Ken" winding up being red faced, should remind him he's a lowly human being like the rest of us.


FGW do take Oyster out to the border of Zone 6 (West Drayton), beyond that just need an extension ticket, these are 'easily' obtained from the ticket machines at Paddington. I say easily for they are there just need to drill down into the machine to find the right menu, all the top level menus are for the usual A-B tickets.

In todays Metro/London Lite/London Paper Ken is spouting on about - Don't pay the ticket fines, boycott them. This after Ken was adament about zero tolerence while in power. Oh what a difference a year makes in politics.