London to Midlands Rail Link

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Transport – in the House of Commons at 2:35 pm on 29th November 1993.

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Photo of Mr John MacGregor Mr John MacGregor Chair, Privileges Committee, The Secretary of State for Transport, Chair, Privileges Committee 2:35 pm, 29th November 1993

The infrastructure is not all going to the south-east. I fully recognise the hon. Gentleman's point, but I am sure that he knows of the £550 million of investment that has been made in the east coast main line. I recognise the need to get on with improving the infrastructure of the west coast main line and I recognise that it will be a massive undertaking, costing on infrastructure alone probably up to £600 million. The priority is the older part of the line south of Crewe. I assure the hon. Gentleman that the appointment of advisers to investigate the possibility of a joint venture between the public and private sectors is not a postponement of consideration of the matter. We have been getting on with it very quickly and we are making good progress. He will recognise, however, that, given the need to keep the line running, it is probably a 10-year project.