The independent London newspaper

Travel on the cheapskate

22 June, 2017 — By John Gulliver

WHAT sort of Britain do we live in?

At times you can’t help thinking it’s cheapskate – cost-cutting in the public sector, provision of services at the lowest possible level. In London rents are sky-high, higher than for decades, and all the time government ministers mouth platitudes, empty slogans.

On Sunday evening, within days of the Grenfell tower disaster, I witnessed another disaster waiting to happen.

I couldn’t board the Thameslink train at Brighton because it was dangerously overcrowded – every square inch in the compartments was packed with travellers.

Scores of people were muttering about how dangerous it was.

The slightest accident on the line could have had terrible consequences.

There were no porters or guards around – no one to control the crowds.

The railway companies run their lines on the cheap.

Kensington and Chelsea council managed Grenfell tower in that way – and that’s what caused the disaster.


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