There is no good excuse left for rail privatisation beyond enriching wealthy elites. Public ownership delivers for social and environmental needs over private profit.

Professor Andrew Cumbers, University of Glasgow

Research into privatisation… boils down to one key finding: the only way Branson and the vast majority of train barons make their profits is through handouts from the taxpayer.

Aditya Chakrabortty, The Guardian

Transport is an essential public service and ought to be publicly owned and publicly controlled. We need an enormous expansion in the investment in our railways and that is the best way of achieving it.

Tony Benn, politician

Something as important and necessary (and enjoyable) as train travel should be in the hands of the people, be affordable and safe, not making money for shareholders.

Nina Power, writer

At its heart privatisation in Britain was never about selling public networks but about selling the rights to tax those who are obliged to use them.

James Meek, writer

To be able to reduce C02 emissions, by persuading people to leave cars at home, we need a fast, efficient subsidised railway system that’s run for people not profit!

Ellie Harrison, campaign founder

Privatisation is only progress, if you mean progressing towards an apocalypse of injustice. Bring back British Rail!

Josie Long, comedian

The privatisation of the railways was a scandal that created an unworkable and expensive structure which should be replaced with a national unified network.

Christian Wolmar, transport commentator

Privatisation of the railways has failed. Its time to make a virtue of public ownership, and the public service provided by state employees.

Charles Secrett, The ACT! Alliance

Now is the moment to re-nationalise the railways and it has never been cheaper or more possible.

Andrew Gilligan, journalist

Let’s make the case for democratic social ownership, fit for the 21st century, ensuring our railways are run in the interests of passengers, not profiteers.

Owen Jones, writer

A good public transport system should be the foundation of a fair, just, happy, low-carbon world.

Ellie Harrison, campaign founder

The UK public wants a publicly owned railway, and so do we. Lush calls for an end to the failed experiment of privatising essential services.

Tamsin Omond, Lush Campaigns

Taking our railways back from private profiteers will mean better services, fairer rail fares and more than £1 billion a year in savings for the public purse.

Caroline Lucas, Green Party MP

Privatisation has delivered… a system in which train operators and energy firms compete not on service – but on how many tariffs they can bamboozle customers with.

Aditya Chakrabortty, The Guardian

If the private companies that took over the national railways are cutting back and eroding services at a time when the climate crisis demands expanded low-carbon transportation alternatives to keep more of us out of planes, then these services too must be reclaimed.

Naomi Klein, writer

East Coast shows us that publicly owned rail works better for passengers and taxpayers. We need a railway fit for the future – it’s got to be in public hands.

Cat Hobbs, We Own It

In 1948 Labour nationalised rail to rebuild Britain after a world war. Today bankers and speculators use privatised trains for tax scams. Time to bring back British Rail.

Alex Gordon, former RMT President

Like most people in Britain, I think that a railway is a natural function of the state, and so ought to be run by the state – for the sake of coherence, transparency, continuity, accountability and national pride.

Andrew Martin, writer

Only a publicly owned railway can deliver affordable fares, good services, high customer satisfaction, properly staffed stations and a profitable return to the public purse.

Charles Secrett, The ACT! Alliance