Rail forum supports transport budget

Posted on: 10/21/2016

THE Chancellor's decision to give the Department for Transport the largest chunk of money to spend out of all the government departments has been welcomed by Derby and Derbyshire Rail Forum.

George Osborne will set aside £30 billion for the DfT to invest in rail and road infrastructure projects over the next four years

Rupert Brennan-Brown, spokesman for the rail forum, which represents more than 80 rail businesses across the region, said: "We welcome the fact that the Department for Transport will receive the largest capital settlement of £30 billion."

Out of the DfT budget, £14 billion will be used to improve the nation's rail infrastructure, which includes spending on new trains.

Trainmaker Bombardier, in Litchurch Lane, is hoping to win this work to help fill a gap in its order book next year.

That will also help secure the long-term future of its 3,000 employees and the 8,000 workers in its supply chain.

Bombardier is prevented from commenting on IEP and Thameslink as it is involved in the bidding process on both.

But communications director Neil Harvey said: "The Chancellor's comments about his commitment to rail is something that clearly we welcome."

Some of the funding for new rail projects is expected to be generated by an increase in fares, which will rise from one per cent to three per cent above inflation from 2012.

Michael Roberts is chief executive of the Association of Train Operating Companies, of which Derby-based East Midlands Trains is a member.

He said: "All extra income raised by the Government's decision will go back to Government, not to train companies."

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