Hammond to announce northern rail investment

Chancellor Philip Hammond is expected to announce an extra £300 million to improve rail links in northern England and allocate £100 million for road improvements.

His speech to the Conservative Party Conference will detail how the extra £300 million will ensure faster linked trains between Liverpool and Manchester, Sheffield, Leeds and York as part of HS2.

Known as the Northern Powerhouse rail scheme, the HS2 connections, between HS2 and cities not directly on its route, are likely to rely on bi-mode trains that can run on diesel and electric power.

The new road projects, which will receive £100 million from existing budgets, will include 10 projects in north-east England, 13 in north-west England and 10 in Yorkshire and Humber.

Responding to the announcement, Stephen Joseph, Chief Executive at Campaign for Better Transport, said: “We welcome the announcement of £300 million for rail infrastructure in the North of England, but passengers and communities will want to see what this means in detail. We hope that the £100 million announced for roads will go on fixing the existing ones where there is a big backlog on maintenance, rather than on one or two big new roads that will just move the traffic jams around."

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