Rail bosses hail Anglian success in national bid to gain support for industry
PUBLISHED: 15:26 06 April 2017 | UPDATED: 15:26 06 April 2017
The number of passengers has doubled in 20 years, and more than £12m a week is being spent on new investment in East Anglia's rail infrastructure according to a new campaign aimed at encouraging more to travel by train.
The Rail Delivery Group, which represents all Britain’s train companies as well as the government-owned infrastructure firm Network Rail, launched its “Britain Runs on Rail” campaign at the end of last month.
And now it has released regional figures to show the importance of the industry to this region.
Every weekday 190,000 passengers travel with Greater Anglia from 132 stations. The company is committed to spending £1.4 billion on all new trains which will be introduced in 2019/20.
Nationally the number of passengers has doubled since 1997 – and East Anglia follows the national trend. Rail companies are spending £100m a week on upgrading track and services with £12m of that going to this region.
Richard Schofield, Network Rail’s route managing director for Anglia, said: “As part of delivering record investment in the railway, Network Rail is supporting around 13,690 jobs across the East of England spending money with 258 local businesses.
“The railway is vital to economic growth. Here in the East of England we are spending £633 million annually to provide a safe, reliable railway.”
The company is being pressed to confirm plans to update the main line from London to the region to allow more trains to travel from Liverpool Street to Ipswich in 60 minutes and Norwich in 90.
Mr Schofield added: “We intend to keep contributing to the economy in the East of England, working with local businesses and creating jobs for local people on improving the railway to bring more connectivity and even more prosperity to all.”
Jamie Burles managing director of Greater Anglia, said: “We are investing heavily in the railway in East Anglia. We’re spending £1.4 billion on all new trains as well as £60 million on improving stations and £120 million on new and improved depots, such as at Brantham.
“We are confident that this investment will not only improve service for our customers, but contribute to economic growth in the area.”