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East Anglia Future 50

One million commuters using Cambridge to Norwich line proves business boom for county

PUBLISHED: 13:57 01 February 2019 | UPDATED: 14:26 01 February 2019

More than one million passengers used the Cambridge to Norwich line last year.  Picture: Archant

More than one million passengers used the Cambridge to Norwich line last year. Picture: Archant

Archant Norfolk 2015

One is famous for its university and punting, the other its castle, two cathedrals and Alan Partridge.

More than one million passengers used the Cambridge to Norwich line last year. Picture: Sonya DuncanMore than one million passengers used the Cambridge to Norwich line last year. Picture: Sonya Duncan

However, new figures suggest a growing bond between the cities of Norwich and Cambridge.

Figures from Greater Anglia show that more than 35,000 additional passengers made journeys between the cities in 2018, with more than one million passengers in total.

It is believed the increase is due to a number of factors, such as a willingness to commute to work, the growing reputations of both cities and ongoing traffic problems at the A14 in Cambridge.

Barry Stone, chair of Norfolk County Council’s business and property committee, says the figures were a boost for Norwich and Norfolk.

More than one million passengers used the Cambridge to Norwich line last year. Picture: Ian BurtMore than one million passengers used the Cambridge to Norwich line last year. Picture: Ian Burt

He added: “People are coming into the city to in increasing numbers and it just goes to show that Norfolk has a thriving and vibrant business community.”

The line stops at Wymondham, Attleborough, Thetford, Brandon and Ely on the way to Cambridge.

The line allows specialists to travel into Norfolk to work at someone of its world leading centres.

Mr Stone added: “We have the Research Park next to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital as well which is world leading in food research and technology.

Head of the business and property committee Barry StoneHead of the business and property committee Barry Stone

“People going out of Norwich on the line shows work we are doing a long the A11 corridor because it’s out of the city we are working to build some houses and businesses.”

Greater Anglia is expecting the number of commuters on the line to increase as it launches new trains and a service to Stansted Airport.

Jonathan Denby, Greater Anglia’s head of corporate affairs, said, “The Norwich to Cambridge train service is extremely important to commuter, business and leisure travellers in these key regional centres, and the towns along the route, providing an attractive alternative to the A11.

“It also supports sustainable economic growth, linking thriving business, education and health sectors.

“With the introduction of our brand new fleet of trains just around the corner, we look forward to improving passengers’ journeys.”

In 2017 a Cambridge North station was opened, which saw more than half a million passengers last year.

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