Posted by: Jason's Staff | April 1, 2011

High Speed Rail

Jason has joined MPs and business leaders from across Yorkshire to sign a letter to the Transport Secretary, Philip Hammond, in support of the High Speed Rail project:

Dear Sir,

We believe it is vital that the Government goes ahead with the development of a new high-speed rail network linking key cities in the north – including Leeds and Sheffield – the Midlands and London.

High-speed rail will help economies outside the south east and play an important part in trying to rebalance the economy. The Government has consistently pledged to do more for the regions, and investing in a high speed rail link to Yorkshire would be a tangible demonstration that the days of the north-south divide in funding are a thing of the past, as well as giving this region a significant boost for the future.

Research by Arup has shown that reducing journey times between London and Leeds by 50 minutes and between London and Sheffield by 45 minutes could bring in benefits worth billions of pounds, and the Department for Transport’s own report calculates the network’s benefits could reach £44bn. The Government’s planned network will also improve access to Heathrow, free up space on existing lines for more freight to be moved by rail rather than road – tackling congestion and pollution – and create thousands of jobs during the construction phase.

The Government must not be blown off course by vocal protests from those along the route of the first phase of the network – the potential benefits of the network to the north, and the country as a whole, are too great to be ignored.

He has also taken part in a Westminster Hall debate on High Speed Two, in which he raised the potential economic benefits for businesses and communities in Yorkshire and the North.

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