Rail industry responds to Transport for the North Strategic Transport Plan 

Speaking on the publication of Transport for the North’s Strategic Transport Plan, Darren Caplan, Chief Executive of the Railway Industry Association (RIA) said:

“The Railway Industry Association welcomes the publication today of Transport for the North’s (TfN’s) Transport Strategy, an important step in the devolution of transport decision-making which will benefit both the North and the UK.

“It is particularly exciting to see more detail emerge about Northern Powerhouse Rail, a transformative rail project that will connect the largest cities in the North to improve productivity and growth. As set out in the document, the ‘emerging vision’ of Northern Powerhouse Rail includes:

  • A new line between Liverpool and HS2 Manchester Spur;
  • Increasing capacity at Manchester Piccadilly with eight services per hour;
  • A new Trans Pennine rail line between Manchester and Leeds;
  • Upgrades along the Hope Valley Line between Sheffield and Manchester;
  • Leeds to Sheffield delivered through HS2 Phase 2B;  Leeds to Newcastle via HS2 junction and upgrades to the East Coast Mainline;
  • Significant upgrades to the existing line from Leeds to Hull and Sheffield to Hull.

“These improvements are all vital in improving connectivity and spurring jobs and investment. Now, TfN – working alongside the Government and various industry partners - needs to develop the business case for these improvements so that we can start getting spades in the ground - in order for both the region and the country to feel the economic benefits as soon as possible.”

Notes to Editors

  1. Transport for the North’s Strategic Transport Plan can be found here
  2.  About the Railway Industry Association: The Railway Industry Association (RIA) is the representative body for UK-based suppliers to the UK and world-wide railways. It has some 200 companies in membership and the sector employs 240,000 people and contributes annually £11 billion Gross Value Added (GVA). It is also a growing industry with the number of rail journeys expected to double over the next 25 years and freight set to grow significantly too. RIA’s membership is active across the whole of railway supply, covering a diverse range of products and services and including both multi-national companies and SMEs (60% by number). RIA works to promote the importance of the rail system to UK plc, to help export UK expertise around the globe and to share best practice and innovation across the industry.