Beith backs free rail for students

Students from the Berwick area who need to travel to Newcastle College for their education must continue to be given free rail travel, says local MP Sir Alan Beith.

The Liberal Democrat was speaking after reports in last week’s Berwick Advertiser that increasing provision for education at Berwick could mean the rail passes faced an uncertain future.

Sir Alan said: “I fought successfully along with Liberal Democrat councillors for the reintroduction of the rail passes after they were scrapped by the old Labour county council. They are essential for students needing to travel to Newcastle to take college courses and I will continue to fight to keep the passes.

“I have had discussions with the county council and fully expect the rail passes to continue to be available to our young people.

“I welcome initiatives to increase the range of courses available to post-16 students in Berwick but we must recognise that some students will still choose courses which are only available at Newcastle and support them in continuing their education.”