RAIL passengers will see an increase in fares on the Merseyrail network from next year.

This comes after the announcement from the Rail Delivery Group (RDG) said that average ticket prices across Britain will go up by 3.4% on January 2 - the largest fares hike in five years.

Passenger watchdog Transport Focus said this was 'a chill wind' blowing down platforms as many passengers’ incomes are falling.

Transport Focus chief executive Anthony Smith said: “While substantial, welcome investment in new trains and improved track and signals is continuing, passengers are still seeing the basic promises made by the rail industry broken on too many days.”

Some Merseyrail tickets will see a price increase in 2018, but overall these fares are set to remain among the lowest in the UK.

Merseyrail also say that the price of some of their tickets will be frozen.

The changes will see Daysavers increase by 10p to £5.20, the cheapest ticket will be £2 which is a return from Liverpool to Sandhills and the most expensive ticket will be £8.65 which is a return from Chester to Southport - the cost of a family ticket will stay the same at £11.

Merseyrail commercial director David O’Leary said: "Each year, we work hard to keep fares as low as possible.

"In 2018, the price of some tickets will go up in line with the Retail Price Index, reflecting the rising cost of operating the network.

"In spite of this, Merseyrail fares still represent good value for money, ensuring that our network remains accessible to the majority, supports communities and boosts the local economy."

The Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union described the Government fares announcement as 'another kick in the teeth' for passengers.

General secretary Mick Cash said: “For public sector workers and many others in our communities who have had their pay and benefits capped or frozen by this Government, these fare increases are another twist of the economic knife.

“The ‎private train companies are laughing all the way to the bank.”