Northern Mayors and Leaders call for HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail, delivered together, all the way, in full

Northern Mayors & Council Leaders, gathering for today’s Convention of the North, are calling for HS2 & Northern Powerhouse Rail, delivered together, all the way, in full.

Following the Prime Minister’s acknowledgement of the ‘transformatory’ power of HS2 & NPR, northern leaders are calling for the Government to deliver on its pledges to create a Northern Powerhouse.

With a new review of HS2 in progress, political, business and industry leaders are coming together to speak with one, powerful and united voice to ensure there is no doubt about the importance of HS2 and NPR for the UK economy.

Mayors and council leaders – including Andy Burnham, Steve Rotheram, Dan Jarvis, Sir Richard Leese, Judith Blake and Nick Forbes – have joined together at Sheffield railway station to support the Connecting Britain campaign this morning (Friday September 13).

Speaking at Sheffield Station this morning, Sheffield City Region Mayor Dan Jarvis said:

‘To ‘Connect Britain’ a step-change in our transport provision is needed to unlock productivity, help people achieve their potential and power up the north. This applies to journeys both long and short – between cities and towns and across our rural areas.

After decades of underinvestment in rail infrastructure, the plan for HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail combined represent a once-in-a-generation chance to transform connectivity.’

Susan Hinchcliffe, Leader of Bradford Council and Chair of West Yorkshire Combined Authority, said:

 ‘Today, leaders from across the North are coming together, on a cross-party basis, and speaking with one united voice. Our message to Boris Johnson and the Oakervee Review is that delivering HS2 and NPR in full will transform towns and cities across the North, helping to attract investment and provide good quality jobs for decades to come.

‘A green light on HS2 in full, together with NPR, would be a clear signal from the government that it recognises that historic underinvestment in transport infrastructure outside London.’

Steve Rotheram, Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, added:

‘It’s ten years since the plans for HS2 were first put forward and yet Government is still debating if it will come to the North or if we should settle for less.

London didn’t have to choose between Crossrail and HS2 and the North shouldn’t have to choose between HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail.  If we are to rebalance the UK’s economy, we need infrastructure investment.  And we need it fast.’

The leaders were speaking ahead of the Convention for the North. A summit that will bring together council leaders, mayors and other senior politicians from across the North of England to make the case for investment in the Northern Powerhouse. The Prime Minister will address the Convention, alongside Northern Powerhouse Minister Jake Berry.

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