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There’s ‘no prospect’ of funding for Ely North rail junction upgrade before 2019

PUBLISHED: 15:51 21 April 2016 | UPDATED: 16:06 21 April 2016

Ely North Railway Junction

Ely North Railway Junction

Archant

Transport bosses have dashed hopes that extra funding would be provided for a crucial study holding up more twice-hourly train services between King’s Lynn and Cambridge and Norwich and Cambridge at the Ely junction.

Elizabeth Truss MP. Picture: Ian BurtElizabeth Truss MP. Picture: Ian Burt

Last year the £35m upgrade to the Ely North rail junction – which was set to start in 2016 – was put back to at least 2019, when the next funding period starts.

South West Norfolk MP Elizabeth Truss held a rail summit in February in Downham Market with fellow MPs and Network Rail, and campaigners agreed to seek to secure funding for a development study into the scheme as early as possible to make sure that work will be ready to start in 2019.

Ms Truss also made an unsuccessful plea for extra funding towards the project before the budget.

While the Department for Transport has pledged to support the work being done by local councils and local enterprise partnerships (LEPs) to progress the study, Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said in a letter to Ms Truss that there was “no prospect” of the government or Network Rail providing funding for the improvements before 2019.

Improvements to Ely North Junction could mean half-hourly services between the Fens and London. Picture: Ian Burt.Improvements to Ely North Junction could mean half-hourly services between the Fens and London. Picture: Ian Burt.

He added in the letter: “I understand the frustration that the delays to ...improvements will cause to customers. However, ...these major works are only being delayed, not cancelled.”

Ms Truss said: “I will be having further meetings with Network Rail and Department for Transport officials to monitor progress.’

How much is the delay to the rail upgrade affecting your business? Email david.bale2@archant.co.uk

2 comments

  • Elizabeth Truss MP is very busy supporting our wonderful Prime Minister and the the EU "Remain In " organisation - after all that's much more important than a few railway lines in East Anglia!

    Report this comment

    Central

    Thursday, April 21, 2016

  • And guess the estimated cost to taxpayers of Crossrail 2 - yes it's between £27-£32 billion. And we can be pretty sure that it will be more than that. Talk about London bleeding the country dry. The figures that I can find for Crossrail 1 - £14.8 billion. Still it's only East Anglia so that doesn't matter -£35 million's far too much for those peasants and all that talk of links between the hight tech communities of Cambridge and the Science Park at Norwich, well, It's so much talk -they don't need an updated public transport system. Elizabeth Truss should get her arse in gear and do something useful for a change. There must be environmental arguments for improving it and she is Minister of the Environment.

    Report this comment

    pablo

    Thursday, April 21, 2016

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