The Prime Minister’s commitment to Northern Powerhouse Rail has been described as a “major leap forward” for the region.
Barry White, Chief Executive at Transport for the North (TfN) was pleased with what he heard from Boris Johnson, who spoke at the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester to pledge his government’s commitment to funding the Manchester to Leeds section of Northern Powerhouse Rail.
In his speech in the north west, the Prime Minister promised funding for a faster trans-pennine route, with details set to be published in autumn, following the anticipated review into HS2.
In response, TfN’s Chief Executive welcomed Mr Johnson’s pledges.
He said: “The fact that the Prime Minister has firmly committed to delivering a Northern Powerhouse Rail network is a major leap forward for the North – one our business and political leaders have been working tirelessly to secure for several years.
“Just days into his premiership, Boris Johnson is here in the North promising to invest in our creaking infrastructure.
“Not just the Manchester to Leeds line, but a whole network from Liverpool to Hull, and from Sheffield up to Newcastle, connecting the towns and cities in between.”
Mr White though, did add that the whole network must be funded.
“At TfN, we’ll work with the new government to make that a reality as quickly as we can. Any agreement later this year must include funding commitments for work on the whole network, including new lines and significant upgrades, and it must be made jointly with the North, as Boris Johnson promised.
“Following decades of underinvestment, our plans are bold, ambitious and would deliver a radical rail network for our towns and cities.
“With the Prime Minister committing to power up the North and rebalance the economy, investment in Northern Powerhouse Rail as well as a raft of local improvements as part of an infrastructure pipeline must now come forward.”