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11 January 2013

Council leaders welcome Network Rail’s Strategic Plan

The upgrade and electrification of the Midland Main Line moved a step closer with this week’s publication by Network Rail of detailed investment proposals for 2014-19. 

Network Rail’s Strategic Plan takes forward the commitment made by Ministers last July to upgrade and electrify the Midland Main Line following a vigorous campaign by council leaders, MPs and business groups.

The plan sets out costed proposals for:

  • electrification of  the line from Bedford to Sheffield via Derby, Nottingham and Corby;
  • station area re-signaling in Derby;  
  • capacity improvements in the Leicester area,
  • a range of other capacity improvements along the line, some of which are still to be finalised; and
  • improvements to allow for larger freight trains. 

It now falls to the Office of the Rail Regulator to endorse Network Rail's proposals before the investment plans can be finalised and works commence.

 Cllr Jon Collins, Vice Chair of East Midlands Councils said:

This is good news for people and businesses across the East Midlands, and vindicates EMCs long running campaign for the upgrade and electrification of the Midlands Main Line.  We will be writing to the Rail Regulator to confirm our support for these proposals, and pressing hard for speedy implementation.”  

Cllr Nick Rushton, EMC Executive Board member said:

“There are still some details to be worked out, for example the scale of the improvements around Market Harborough, but this is a very positive step forward. We now need to ensure that the Rail Regulator approves the investment and work starts as soon as possible.” 

Notes to Editors

East Midlands Councils is the consultative forum for local authorities in the region. It provides support to Councils to improve their services and is a strong voice for the East Midlands.  www.emcouncils.gov.uk

East Midlands Councils and South Yorkshire PTE published a joint prospectus setting out the economic benefits of upgrading and electrifying the Midland Main Line in November 2011, available here

Contacts

For further information please contact:

Andrew Pritchard, Director of Policy & Infrastructure, East Midlands Councils

Tel: 01664 502620.  Mobile 07795 060943

E-mail: andrew.pritchard@emcouncils.gov.uk     

This press release can also be downloaded:

Network Rail Business Plan Press Release 8.1.13

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