Labour has again given firm support to proposals to build High Speed Rail lines in a speech at its party conference in Liverpool today (September 26).
Shadow Secretary of State for Transport Maria Eagle called for the whole of the proposed HS2 route to be included in forthcoming legislation, rather than only London to Birmingham.
Labour’s firm support follows on from Nick Clegg and Norman Baker’s backing for HS2 at last week’s Liberal Democrat party conference in Birmingham.
The following is an extract from Maria Eagle MP’s speech:
And let’s set out a long term strategy for investing in our rail infrastructure.
No more talk of classic rail, but a network transformed with a programme to complete electrification and introduce a new generation of high speed inter-city trains. And, yes, let’s also tackle capacity problems between north and south. And in the only credible way it can be done.
That’s why it was Labour that set out plans for a new high speed line. Not just from London to Birmingham, but on to Manchester, Sheffield and Leeds. Cutting journey times across the UK, benefitting Glasgow and Edinburgh. And, yes, bringing Liverpool under 100 minutes from London.
But the Tory-led Government is only planning to take powers to construct the line as far as Birmingham which casts real doubt on their long term commitment to delivering high speed rail in the north. They should think again and ensure the whole route is included in the forthcoming legislation.
And let’s make it a line that is affordable for the many, not the few.
You can read the full speech here.