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Confidence in the Secretary of State for Transport

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 2:26 pm on 19th June 2018.

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Photo of Alan Brown Alan Brown Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Transport), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Infrastructure and Energy) 2:26 pm, 19th June 2018

It could make a big difference to rail travel in Scotland, and it could also make a Treasury saving. The fact that the Secretary of State continues to refuse to do that defies logic.

We have also seen the railcard fiasco. The railcard has been put on hold because, apparently, no one wants to pay for it. Who would have thought the industry would not want to pay for a gimmick that the Government introduced in the Budget, when they said, “The industry will pay for it”? That is just another failure on the part of this Government.

GTR’s chief executive, Charles Horton, has resigned, Mark Carne and Network Rail’s chief financial officer are forgoing their bonuses, and we have seen plenty of other Government resignations. It is time for the Transport Secretary to consider his position, rather than awaiting the outcome of a review.

Commenting on delays in the Waverley station refurbishment, Ruth Davidson, the Scottish Tory leader, said:

“This cannot continue for much longer, and it’s not good enough for ministers to just shrug their shoulders and say they’re doing their best.”

Given the delays were the fault of Network Rail, will the Secretary of State do what the Scottish Tory leader thinks is correct, and what we think he should do?