Travellers have voiced their concerns following a rise in rail fares.

Rail ticket prices have risen by an average of 3.4 per cent across the UK, and 3.3 per cent in Dorset, meaning that passengers will have to dig a little deeper into their pockets to pay for a train ticket.

The hike – the biggest increase since 2013 – came into effect on the day many returned to work after the Christmas break.

At Weymouth station, people complained the changes would make it difficult to afford for those who commute to work.

David Bain, from Weymouth, said: “It’s going to annoy a lot of people. Everyone has got to get to and from work. They have got us over a barrel. We can’t say we want a pay rise.”

Visitor Chris Barber said: “My thoughts go to the people who have to commute, I don’t know how they can afford this.”

David Palmer, from Dorchester, said: “It’s not like Weymouth and Dorchester are the most connected places. If you are without a car it is almost impossible to get around and an increase in fares will have a huge impact on people.”

Kelvin Clayton, chairman of West and South Dorset Green Party said he believes that public ownership of the railways is needed for there to be significant improvements.

He said: “My view on the issue is that transport should be publicly funded. Bring railways into public ownership. If we are going to reduce the number of vehicles on the road, people will have to move towards public transport and it needs to be cheaper and quicker than the roads and at the moment it’s not.

“Until there is an incentive to use the public transport people won’t use the railways.”

Philip Sankey, chairman of West Dorset Western Area Transport Action Group, said: “It would be unfortunate for the rise in fares to cause people to give up on the railways and use alternative modes of travel which may put additional congestion on the roads.”

Meanwhile, a study by charity Southern Policy Centre reveals that commuters in the south west have been forced to pay a premium in order to reduce ticket costs for passengers in other parts of the UK.

The study showed that in 2016/17, passengers of former operator South West Trains paid 16.6p per mile travelled more than the cost of running the service, placing the burden of paying for the rail system unfairly on passengers.