High-speed Rail Network

Oral Answers to Questions — Transport – in the House of Commons at 9:30 am on 28th January 2016.

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Photo of Marion Fellows Marion Fellows SNP Whip 9:30 am, 28th January 2016

What recent discussions he has had with Ministers in the Scottish Government on development of the high-speed rail network.

Photo of Robert Goodwill Robert Goodwill Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

I shared the platform with the Scottish Minister, Keith Brown, at the HS2 supply chain conference on 5 November in Edinburgh. We discussed the benefits that Scotland will get from HS2. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State has arranged to meet Keith next week.

Photo of Marion Fellows Marion Fellows SNP Whip

The Minister will recall that he was previously asked by my hon. Friend Alan Brown about the potential for increased journey times north of Crewe to Scotland under the current proposals for HS2. At the time, he suggested that upgrades on the line were already underway. Therefore, will he now commit to providing the Scottish Government with a definitive timetable for those upgrades?

Photo of Robert Goodwill Robert Goodwill Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

I can tell the hon. Lady that HS2 will deliver increased benefits to Scotland. From day one, journey times from Glasgow will be reduced from four hours 31 minutes to three hours 56 minutes. Indeed, the full Y network will benefit Scotland to the tune of £3 billion. Interestingly, she does not mention Nicola Sturgeon’s own bullet train, the Glasgow-Edinburgh scheme, which she announced as infrastructure Minister in 2012. It appears that Scotland’s First Minister has now given her bullet train the bullet.