Friday, 19 November 2021

Journey times will be cut in transformation of our rail services

The government has announced plans for a £96 billion transformation of our rail services - the biggest ever investment - and its good news for the North East.


In recent years, there has been a lot of concern - especially in our region - that plans in place to deliver upgrades via HS2 would take decades for us to see the benefits.


We need better rail travel as soon as possible, and that’s why the plans announced this week are so important. The investment will means quicker, more reliable and greener rail travel from the North East to the rest of the country.


Journey times on the East Coast Mainline will be cut significantly thanks to the upgrades:


Newcastle to London will be 21 minutes quicker


Newcastle to Manchester will be 22 minutes quicker


Newcastle to Birmingham will be 30 minutes quicker.


This builds on recent investment in rail travel between Newcastle and Carlisle. New trains are now running across the Tyne Valley, with better seating, free WiFi, and USB charging. And of course, I’ll keep fighting for investment in our local lines - including Gilsland, which I want to see finally reopened!


Connectivity is absolutely essential to levelling up. This investment will cut journey times and improve reliability.


Good news for Tynedale and Ponteland.