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16 July 2012

Full Speed Ahead for Electric Trains!

The long awaited upgrade & electrification of the Midland Main Line from Bedford through the East Midlands to Sheffield moved a step closer today as the Government signalled its intention to press head with industry-led investment proposals published last autumn. 

Council and business leaders from across the East Midlands and South Yorkshire have strongly welcomed the publication of the ‘High Level Output Statement’ or ‘HLOS’ for 2014-19. The HLOS confirms the intention to electrify the Midland Main Line between Bedford and Sheffield and to deliver capacity improvements around Derby, Leicester and in between Kettering and Corby. 

If fully implemented, the upgrade & electrification package proposed last year would enable more reliable and greener rail travel and lead to significant journey time savings. Electrification would also allow trains to run on both ‘classic’ lines and the Government’s proposed new HS2 line – widening access to ‘high speed’ rail services across the East Midlands and South Yorkshire. 

The publication of the HLOS brings this investment a step closer and follows a vigorous campaign led by East Midlands Councils and South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive, working closely with Local Enterprise Partnerships along the line and Nicky Morgan MP (Loughborough) - who has spearheaded the campaign in the House of Commons. 

Mick Jameson, Chair of the South Yorkshire Integrated Transport Authority, said:

Upgrade and electrification of the Midland Main Line will boost connectivity and be great news for the travelling public of Sheffield and South Yorkshire. Today’s announcement is welcome, and we will continue to make the case for electrification so that it gets the final go ahead next year”.

Cllr Kay Cutts, Leader of Nottinghamshire County Council and EMC Executive Board Member said: 

"We have worked closely with businesses, Local Enterprise Partnership and MPs to build an unanswerable case for this investment, which will be of huge benefit to Nottinghamshire, and I am very pleased that our efforts have started to pay off. We now need to make sure implementation goes ahead quickly – I want to see contractors on the ground as soon as possible.”

 Cllr Rory Palmer, Deputy City Mayor of Leicester and EMC Executive Board Member said:

“Today’s announcement is a significant boost for the people and businesses of Leicester, and will help to raise the profile of the City with potential investors. The Midland Main Line badly needs this investment if it is to maintain the levels of passenger growth and improved reliability we have seen in recent years.”

Cllr Jim Harker OBE, Leader of Northamptonshire County Council and Infrastructure lead for East Midlands Councils said: 

“Upgrade and electrification of the Midland Main Line is crucial for the economic future of towns of Corby, Kettering and Wellingborough, as well as for the wider East Midlands. The Government’s announcement represents a clear statement of intent to invest in our future – something that I very much welcome”. 

For more information please contact: 

Marcus King, Strategy & Policy SYPTE. Tel: 0114 2211 456 ext:2456 Mobile 07972 871022. Email: Marcus.King@sypte.co.uk

Andrew Pritchard, Director of Policy & Infrastructure, EMC. Tel 01664 502 641, Mobile 07795 060943. E-mail: andrew.pritchard@emcouncils.gov.uk

 

This press release can also be downloaded:

Full Speed Ahead for Electic Trains Press Release 16 July 2012

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