Britain’s Railways - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 6:20 pm on 24th May 2021.

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Photo of Lord Snape Lord Snape Labour 6:20 pm, 24th May 2021

Does the Minister accept that we have spent many years listening to Conservative Ministers extolling the virtues of franchising, yet the White Paper acknowledges, in effect, that the franchising system has been an expensive failure, the abolition of which is long overdue? On rail freight, what actions will Ministers take to ensure the future success of the rail freight industry if we are to achieve a meaningful transfer of freight from road to rail and reduce the number of heavy goods vehicles on our roads? Will Ministers reject the RHA’s incessant demands for bigger and heavier lorries on our overburdened road network? Does the Minister agree that, properly encouraged, rail freight could make a significantly greater contribution towards the Government’s carbon reduction targets?