Transport Connectivity: North-west England

Part of Transport – in the House of Commons at on 8 February 2024.

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Photo of Huw Merriman Huw Merriman Minister of State (Department for Transport)

Obviously, we do not comment on documents that may or may not have been leaked. What I can say is that the HS2 train design has always had capacity for 500 seats; if the trains had doubled up to 400 metres in length, the capacity would, of course, be 1,000 seats. The Network North document committed half a billion pounds to look at unlocking further capacity. Let us be quite clear that the 140 miles of HS2 being built to Birmingham will reduce the journey times not only to Birmingham, but to Manchester by another 27 minutes, and to Liverpool by 26 minutes. As far as the tilting is concerned, as the Department made clear to the Public Accounts Committee, we are looking at where those speeds can still be achieved on the west coast main line without the need to tilt.