EDP SAYS: We've been let down on cash for trains - AGAIN!

Greater Anglia new Bi-Mode train at Norwich station

The rail network for this region must be improved - Credit: Greater Anglia

Yet again the region has been snubbed.

As the government hailed its £96bn rail investment yesterday, there was one glaring omission from the proposals, any cash for the East.

For years it's been clear our rail network is in dire need of an upgrade. It's slow, out of date, too irregular and doesn't properly service the needs of our growing region.

Woe betide anyone who tries to travel on a Sunday when they will be faced with the misery of repeated rail replacement services.

For years the case has been taken to the very top of government. Give us 'Norwich in 90' has been the rallying cry, 'we're listening' the response.

And there were signs of hope. Abellio Greater Anglia, who this newspaper has repeatedly challenged about its own standard of service, has done its bit. It has given us fantastic new trains.

But what's the point having a shiny new train set, if the equipment you are putting it on is broken or out of shape?

Greater Anglia Norwich

Greater Anglia have done their bit with new trains - Credit: Greater Anglia

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It's clear from the release of yesterday's Integrated Rail Plan, the government may be listening to our case, but this isn't leading to any firm action.

Yet that's not the case as far as other parts of the country is concerned. 

All the headlines nationally were of  the demise of a section of HS2. But despite this, the majority of that rail pot of gold is still going to the Midlands and the North. Level up, they say, but what about levelling up the East as well?

This isn't the first time we've been snubbed. 

In the recent autumn Budget, this region also fared disappointingly. We've seen repeated promises about better roads fade into thin air.

The cynical might look at the political landscape in this region and wonder whether it's all a little bit too comfortable for the party in blue. Why would they turn their attentions to this neck of the woods, when seats elsewhere are much more at risk?

Others may wonder whether our MPs are fighting hard enough for their people? Or if we're missing out by not having an elected Mayor?

Whatever the answer this can't go on. And today this newspaper has teamed up with its sister paper the East Anglian Daily Times to say enough is enough.

The East is full of potential which needs to be realised. It's people need better transport options so they can ditch their cars and protect the planet.

The case has been made, plans set out, so why, oh why, are we still waiting?




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