I would like to welcome the announcement made on July 16th by Justine Greening, the Secretary of State for Transport, that the Government has green-lighted an £800 million investment in the electrification of the Midland Mainline, part of its £9 billion investment in UK infrastructure.
The electrification will cut journey times and boost capacity for passengers and freight, comprising of an upgrade from Sheffield – through Nottingham, Derby, and Leicester – to Bedford, completing the full electrification of the Mainline out of London St Pancras.
I’ve been working to help achieve this since I was elected. My colleagues and I have raised the issue in Parliament, in written questions, and by lobbying the Department of Transport.
As I pointed out in Parliament back in April, many people in the East Midlands can currently get to London faster by driving to Tamworth and taking the West Coast Mainline, or to Grantham or Newark and taking the East Coast Mainline. This will see faster journey times for many local people.
Electrification will provide £800 million in crucial investment, and will boost jobs and growth in the area. This will be particularly welcomed by my constituents who work in the rail industry at various points down the supply chain.
A further £100m for the Access for All fund was also announced – I hope this means that both Alfreton and Langley Mill stations will now both get the access improvements that are needed to ensure all passengers can use the stations.