Home Page Haverhill News

Haverhill Poll
Haverhill Poll


Mailing List

Matthew Hancock
Your Local MP

Top rail executives meet with rail minister about Suffolk

Saturday, 15th November 2014.

The new rail minister, Claire Perry MP, heard about the need to improve rail services in Suffolk at a rail conference being hosted by Suffolk County Council yesterday.

The 2014 Suffolk Rail Conference focused on the new long-term rail franchise and provided a forum for delegates to discuss Suffolk’s rail priorities.

In addition to calls for improved rail infrastructure, faster line speeds, better rolling stock and more frequent services on the Great Eastern Main Line into London Liverpool Street, key rail priorities for Suffolk include:
· An hourly Ipswich to Peterborough passenger service;
· A half-hourly Ipswich to Cambridge passenger service;
· A half-hourly Ipswich to Lowestoft passenger service;
· Improvements to the Felixstowe branch line to allow more punctual and reliable passenger services;
· Hourly Sunday passenger services;
· Station improvements;
· Faster line speeds on local lines.

Cllr Graham Newman, Suffolk County Council’s cabinet member for roads, transport and planning, said: “We are delighted to have the new rail minister attend the Suffolk Rail Conference.

"We have organised this event at a crucial time for Suffolk, as the Department for Transport is starting the process to retender the new long-term rail franchise and Network Rail is developing its rail investment plans.

“We need to respond robustly to both organisations, and the Suffolk Rail Conference provides the perfect opportunity to raise the county’s rail demands with key decision-makers.”

Rail minister Claire Perry MP, said: "We have big ambitions for the rail network in East Anglia. The report from the Great Eastern Rail Taskforce will be invaluable as we consider how we can build on the improvements already underway in the region.

"As part of our long-term economic plan, more than £38bn will be invested over the next five years in building a world-class rail network across the UK.

"Passengers in East Anglia are already benefiting from improvements, including more services and improved trains on the Greater Anglia franchise, while next year, work on the Great Eastern Main Line will provide more reliable journeys.”

Mark Pendlington, chairman of New Anglia LEP and co-chair of the Great Eastern Main Line Taskforce, said: "I am grateful that Rail Minister Claire Perry has come to Suffolk to hear at first hand the vital importance to our economy of investing more in Suffolk's essential rail services.

"She has already told us that we have a compelling case for improvements in the Great Eastern Main Line, which is all part of our campaign to make Suffolk an even more accessible and mobile economy.

“From faster broadband and better mobile signals, to better roads and rail services. Let our collective and persuasive voice for investment and improvements continue to be heard loud and clear in government."

Stephen Britt, Suffolk Chamber Transport and Infrastructure Board Chairman, said: "This important conference was an ideal opportunity to reinforce to the Transport Minster the urgent need for investment into Suffolk transport infrastructure.

"Business in our county ensured the Department for Transport and HM Treasury listened during the No Toll Tax on Suffolk campaign.

"Therefore we must continue to press home the message that as a region we are a positive contributor to the UK economy.

"The Government must invest in winners and that means significant decisions need to be made now to make sure our transport links are fit for the 21st century."

Alongside the new rail minister, keynote speeches were delivered by MPs Ben Gummer and Thérèse Coffey; chairman of the New Anglia LEP, Mark Pendlington; planning and strategy director at Network Rail, Paul Harwood; and managing director at Abellio Greater Anglia, Jamie Burles.

Presentations were also provided by Karen Letten, franchise project director at the Department for Transport; Maggie Simpson, executive director at the Rail Freight Group; and Linda McCord, senior passenger manager at Passenger Focus.

Details about a new rail link between Cambridge and Oxford was presented by Patrick O’Sullivan, rail consultant for the East West Rail Consortium.

The Suffolk Rail Conference was attended by local politicians, businesses, rail interest groups and representatives from the rail industry.

The conference took place at Suffolk County Council, Endeavour House in Ipswich.

Haverhill Online News

Comment on this story

[board listing] [login] [register]

No comments have been posted for this news entry.


You must be logged in to post messages. (login now)

© Haverhill-UK | Accessibility | Disclaimer