Labour MP blames delayed journey on privatised rail - despite travelling on a publicly owned train

Labour MP Zarah Sultana posted a photo from her delayed train journey
Labour MP Zarah Sultana posted a photo from her delayed train journey

The MP was travelling to Leeds when she took to Twitter to blame 'privatisation' for her delayed journey

Zarah Sultana, Labour MP for Coventry South, was left red-faced after taking to social media to blame her delayed train journey on the privatisation of the rail network - only to find out that she was travelling on a publicly-owned train.

Travelling to Leeds for a campaign rally against the cost of living, Sultana posted a picture on Twitter describing her delayed journey as 'another reminder to bring rail into public ownership'.

However, what the Labour MP hadn't realised was that she was sat on London North Eastern Railway (LNER) service - which has been owed by the Department of Transport since 2018.

Fortunately, a social media employee for the franchise stepped in to correct her.

The MP said: "My train to Leeds for tonight's Enough is Enough rally has been stopped just outside London for the last 3 hours.

"I'm sorry not to be there, Leeds."

"Just another reminder that we need to bring rail into public ownership and make it fit for the future."

An hour later, a customer service representative spotted her tweet and responded to say that the franchise has been in the hands of the Department for Transport for four years.

The member of staff called Cameron said: "I am sorry for the delay, Zarah.

"This was due to damage to the overhead electric wires meaning services could not move around Stevenage, but services are now on the move.

"On your other point, LNER is owned by the DfT after the franchise was handed back in 2018."